PINECREST, Fla. – Everyone jokes that Miami could soon be underwater, but a new art installation in southwest Miami-Dade County is making the seemingly abstract problem more concrete, showing how all that extra water would affect South Florida's roads.
To help raise awareness about sea level rise, environmental artist Xavier Cortada is painting 25-foot by 25-foot Underwater Markers in spots around the village of Pinecrest. The markers depict where sea level will rise directly onto the roadways.
"By mapping the impending crisis, I make the invisible visible. Block by block, house by house, neighbor by neighbor, I want to make the future impact of sea level rise something impossible to ignore," Cortada said.
Cortada, who was recently one of 12 artists featured in a New York Times story about climate change, is working with high school students to help get the markers done while teaching them about the danger of rising sea levels. Titled Underwater HOA, the art project will be part of this year's Art Basel.
The Underwater Markers show how many feet of melting glacial waters need to rise before the area is underwater.
The paintings are bright blue and hard for the Miami residents who drive past the intersections to miss. The goal to the paintings is to try and bring citizens together to become quicker problem-solvers.
"I want residents across Miami-Dade County to understand this is not a political partisan issue. This is a community issue,” Cortada said. “Underwater HOA and sea-level rise is relevant to everyone."