For 60 years, South Miami resident Stuart Grant considered the atoll at Matheson Hammock Park a “backyard pool,” with a sheltered lagoon for family-friendly swimming and a tidy beach dotted with palm trees. Not so much anymore.
On Sunday, Grant set up his camera to document the dramatic flooding that now regularly swamps the lagoon and nearby parking lot during seasonal king tides. The time-lapse video, shot from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., opens with a typical day at the photogenic spot: a bride and groom posing for a portrait, lifeguards heading for their stations and bikers out for morning rides. As high tides arrive, flooding dramatically increases, inundating the beach from both the east and west.
“Except for a hurricane, it did not ever flood like it does now back then” Grant wrote in an email. “I am not trying to scare people. [I] just want to show in a graphic way that sea level has already risen significantly and we need to make decisions as a community that recognize the rise will continue.”