Courtesy of Meisel Spottswood Marina Management Co.
In late August, the Key West Truman Waterfront Advisory Board heard from three firms vying to design a future park on the Truman Water Front. The seven-person board ranked the three presenting firms as follows: Atkins (formerly Post Buckley Schuh and Jernigan), Bermello Ajamil & Partners Inc., and Parker/Mudgett/Smith Architects Inc.
For more information on the firms come back after the break.
Atkins is a London-based firm with a history of work in the Keys. Among its projects was a newly raised Card Sound Road in North Key Largo about 20 years ago. It’s also responsible for, among other projects, the Florida State University Academic Center and Stadium, St. Cloud Lakefront Park near Orlando, and the Mixed Use Center in Zhangjigang. Their presentation centered around the theme of a kite; the analogy means “having meaningful public space, waterfront public space, that would be breezy, that would big enough for people to go fly a kite,” Atkins’ Larry Levis said. “That’s what this project symbolizes to us.”
This potential park is just part of the future for the Truman Waterfront. Two private entities are also looking to use for water access. The Meisel Spottswood Marina Management Co. wants to build a marina with upland support facilities; the Florida Keys Assisted Care Coalition is trying to obtain a lease deal that would accommodate construction of an assisted- and independent-living facility.
Before focusing development on just the marina component, Meisel Spottswood contracted with Bermello, Ajamil & Partners to plan a park scheme for the entire property. That Miami-based firm has already done a significant amount of site work on the Truman property, producing a number of detailed conceptual plans. The Bermello team attributed their fit for the project to the familiarity they have already acquired with the site. Luis Ajamil acknowledged that the MSM design played up the “tourist dimension. Now we’re going to step back and look at it from your dimension, a community dimension. We know this park and that really gives us an ability to work with this piece of property.”
The team from the Fort Myers-based Parker/Mudgett/Smith Architects, a small firm compared to the other two finalists, framed its presentation around 10 different verbs: Transform, connect, stir, understand, engage, choose, validate, function, sustain and create.