Miami Beach

New detour in South Beach begins Wednesday

A middle-school student in Miami Beach waits for the school bus in front of his condo on Indian Creek Drive during the king tide in autumn of 2015.
A middle-school student in Miami Beach waits for the school bus in front of his condo on Indian Creek Drive during the king tide in autumn of 2015. Miami Herald file

A five-block stretch of Indian Creek Drive will be closed through September during the next phase of work on a $25 million drainage project to improve the flood-prone roadway.

Starting Wednesday, southbound Indian Creek Drive will be closed at 31st Street so contractors can install underground drainage structures stretching down to 26th Street. Cars will be detoured east to Collins Avenue, which will become two-way up to 31st Street. Vehicles going to buildings along that section of road will still be allowed. Buses and trolleys will still run on Indian Creek.

The city expects this traffic pattern to be in place through September, when contractors aim to complete drainage and installation of a stormwater pump. The city wants to have the anti-flooding infrastructure operational before the annual king tide arrives in the fall, which flooded the road badly enough in 2015 to force a closure.

Indian Creek Drive is a state-owned road. The Florida Department of Transportation is paying for $19.5 million of the work.

Flaggers and off-duty police officers will be on site to help direct traffic.

The project began in the fall of 2016 with the raising of the seawall south of 26th. It is part of a larger citywide effort to combat worsening tidal flooding that has been exacerbated by sea-level rise. The city will also be rebuilding the road higher. Some of the road-raising will begin this year, but that work will extend into 2018.

Joey Flechas: 305-376-3602, @joeflech

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