Miami Beach’s ambitious but perennially-challenged plan to overhaul its convention center district hangs in the balance this election season.
When voters go to the polls Tuesday, they will have a clear choice between candidates who want to see the massive project move forward, and those who want to see it drastically scaled down. Voters will also decide on a referendum that could make the project harder to ultimately pass.
If a new commission is elected and the referendum passes, it would represent a victory for one person in particular: current Beach Commissioner Jonah Wolfson.
Wolfson has led a one-man fight against the scope and scale of the current billion-dollar plan, which encompasses 52-acres of prime real estate smack in the middle of South Beach. It was Wolfson who landed the referendum on the ballot. He also successfully took his own city to court to get another ballot item — this one asking voters to approve the total convention center project — kicked off. And he did it all without the political support of his fellow commissioners, impressing even his staunchest opponents.