Miami Shores Village is located just north of the City of Miami. This mostly single-family community has a population of approximately 11,000 residents. Miami Shores can be considered to be relatively wealthy with a median household income of about $100,000. The village is surrounded by much poorer areas to the North and West which are part of unincorporated Miami Dade County.
Many years ago, the residents of Miami Shores Village decided that it would be best to surround themselves with walls, fences, and gates (with combination locks!) to fortify themselves from surrounding neighborhoods in an attempt to make Miami Shores safer.
Entire rights-of-way are now impassable. How in the world is this even legal? Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) laws anyone? Along Biscayne Boulevard, gates with combination locks have been placed in the right-of-way.
What are the negative consequences of gated communities?
- Gating acts as a border that fragments the city, forcing pedestrians and cyclists to walk or bike block out of their way to arrive to their destination.
- City residents are denied access to public infrastructures and spaces when the gates are locked.
- Gating forces vehicles on to other open streets causing increased traffic and speeding on non-closed streets.
- Gated communities can create social paranoia due to the security-oriented life-style.
- Gating can lead to a relocation of crime outside the gates and within adjacent non-gated communities.
- Gating can have a negative impact on property values in non-gated adjacent neighbourhoods. This can lead to further preventive gating developments in a neighborhood, as former non-gated communities have to fit gates in order to maintain their property values and avoid crime relocation.
Seems like now is a good time to start reclaiming our public rights of way. There is little to no evidence that gated communities are safer. What do you say Miami Shores?
Additional photos below.