Environmentalists also urged protecting more land around a drinking-water well field south of Southwest 42nd Street and west of Krome Avenue.
Commissioners came close to siding with them, voting 6-5 in favor to keep development away from the well field. But the measure needed seven votes to pass under county rules, so it failed. Commissioners Edmonson and Souto were absent from the vote.
Commissioners also rejected the recommendation for the other two tracts east of the Homestead Air Reserve Base, citing concerns from property owners who said their land would lose value if they no longer had the future development designation.
“It does no harm to keep it the same,” Bell said.
Two major farmers and landowners said Wednesday that they their properties are collateral for bank loans. If the properties lost value, they said the farmers’ finances could be at risk.
“If the line is moved, the values of those lands affected will decrease, and we will have serious issues with banks,” said Nicolas Diaz of Manuel Diaz Farms in Homestead. “Bankruptcy will be the only option.”
An attorney for nearby Alger Farms made a similar argument.
But Col. Chris Funk, commander of the 482nd fighter wing, supported constraining future development on the two parcels by the base, citing noise from military aircraft and the potential for major accidents.
Commissioners did approve reducing one urban expansion area west of 137th Avenue between Northwest 12th Street and Southwest Eighth Street by 575 acres because it could contain future wetlands.
Several board members also questioned the county’s projections for slowed population growth, as did land-use attorneys who claimed the county has a dwindling housing supply.
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity had said the county underestimated growth in its original projection. Mark Woerner, Miami-Dade’s planning chief, said the county adjusted its numbers to include higher immigration rates, as suggested by the state.
But even then, net population growth will still slow down between now and 2030, said Woerner, noting the county’s solid track record in predicting demographic changes. The state itself found the county’s method was sound.
Still, commissioners repeatedly questioned the projection, saying they refused to believe that Miami-Dade would not continue to see a similar influx of new residents from Latin America.
“I have a hard time subscribing to any data suggesting that we’re going to have a reduction in population growth within the next 10 to 20 years,” Monestime said.
A previous version of this article misstated how much longer the buildable land inside the Urban Development Boundary should last the county.