A person walks into Miami Beach City Hall during early voting on August 8, 2022.

A person walks into Miami Beach City Hall during early voting on August 8, 2022.

for the Miami Herald

Miami Beach voters overwhelmingly approved six ballot questions Tuesday, supporting real estate-related changes, candidate residency requirements and a new park name in South Beach.

Among the changes coming to the city are new incentives to convert flats into residential buildings, a new community health center on Alton Road as part of a land swap, and requiring voters to approve the ” release” of public streets to allow developers to increase density.

Here is an overview of the results:

82% of voters approved the renaming of a newly opened 3-acre public park in South Beach as “Canopy Park”. The park, built between Alton Road and West Avenue from Sixth to Eighth Streets, was one of the public benefits promised in a development agreement for the construction of the Five Park condo tower next door.

A new requirement for the city adjustment board was approved by 79% of voters include at least one architect. Previously, the appointed council consisted of two citizen members at large and five members who could represent one of the following professions: law, architecture, accounting, financial consulting and general affairs. From now on, an architect will be compulsory within the council.

Residents voted 94% in favor of a new requirement that applicants provide physical proof of residency. Political candidates in Miami Beach had to have already lived in the city for at least a year before qualifying to run for office, but the approval of this measure adds an additional requirement by requiring candidates to submit physical proof of their residence.

Voters passed a measure with 71% support to give landlords of hotel apartments in the South of the Fifth Ward an incentive convert to full-time residential properties in exchange for the ability to develop more square footage and units. Apartment hotels, which combine apartments and hotel rooms, are banned in much of the South Fifth Ward, but there are seven that were approved before the ban last year.

62% of voters approved increased density in part of South Beach to allow developers to build a mixed-use structure at 710-720 Alton Road, the current site of a community health center that city officials say is in poor condition. The developers agreed that, if the referendum passed, they would build a new and improved community health center at nearby 663 Alton Road.

A referendum passed with 78% support demand a citywide vote before the city can “vacate” streets or other public property to allow developers to increase the density of their projects. Freeing a street means that a city hands over control of a public road to a private owner. The referendum addresses what some city officials see as a loophole that has allowed developers to increase the density of their projects without voter participation.

This story was originally published August 23, 2022 8:41 p.m.

Aaron Leibowitz is a city government reporter for the Miami Herald. He writes about local politics in every city, town, and city in Miami-Dade County and sometimes beyond.