MIAMI – Gus Arango recently "Called Christina" to complain about what he felt was an unacceptable amount of trash and debris along the rock wall of Bayfront Park.
This week, Bayfront Management Trust added his concern to their agenda meeting and moved forward with a plan to fix the problem.
"The City of Miami was able to get together and put a plan to clean up the rock area," Arango said. "And it was all thanks to you guys for putting the show together and bringing awareness, so once again, thank you very much for your help."
The project will include an intensive cleaning for 10 days with four laborers for 8 hours per day and a pickup truck, followed by twice weekly cleaning to include two laborers for 8 hours per day and a pickup truck.
"We would like to thank 'Call Christina' for pointing out the issue at Bayfront Park with the clean-up," Miami Commissioner and Bayfront Park Management Trust Chairman Frank Carollo said. "I brought an item to the board of trustees of the Bayfront Park and they unanimously approved additional funding, non-taxpayer funding, in order for us to start an immediate, intense clean-up."
Last October, Arango, who works near the park and takes his children there on the weekend, told Local 10 News investigative reporter Christina Vazquez, "From far away, you look at it, and you go, 'Wow, it looks fantastic.' But when you get up close to the sea wall, the view takes a different turn."
"Styrofoam cups, beer cans, (and) cartons everywhere," he said. "The trash sometimes gets smelly. You can't even stand here and enjoy the view."
Even tourists like Chris Martin visiting from Sydney, Australia, noticed the trash tucked into the crevices of the rock wall.
"All various types of rubbish, flip flops, (and) plastic bottles. When you are on the edge, you can clearly see it's been washed in," Martin said.
Arango said fighting for a more aggressive clean-up plan is a matter of civic pride.
Carollo explained that the funding will run through the fiscal year and staff will monitor to see if the plan is sufficient or if more funding is necessary.
"This is again non-taxpayer funding," Carollo said. "This is funding that Bayfront Park Management Trust earns and we will apply it, making sure that even in between the rocks our sea wall will look beautiful."
Staff will monitor the project to determine if the response is sufficient to maintaining a clean seawall.
The intensive clean-up started this week.