City of Miami, Florida Resolution on Climate Gentrification

On November 5, 2018, Mayor Suarez of Miami signed a Resolution directing city staff to research the effects of “climate gentrification” on low-income communities that are inland at higher elevations, and to explore ways to stabilize property taxes to reduce displacement. The City of Miami, Florida is seeing high rates of sea-level rise and increasing incidence of nuisance flooding in low-lying areas. As a result, higher elevation areas of the city, which house many of Miami’s lower and moderate income communities, are seeing greater development pressures, which is affecting property values and taxes. Higher tax rates and real estate speculation result in higher housing costs that have the potential to displace lower-income homeowners and renters. The Resolution acknowledges these threats causing “climate gentrification” and directs city staff to identify policy solutions to lessen its negative impact.

The Resolution directs the City Manager and city staff to research how climate change may cause gentrification and displacement in areas “that exhibit low Area Median Income rates and higher topographic elevations.” The resolution further directs research on options for stabilizing property tax rates so that “residents who wish to remain in affected neighborhoods can do so.”  

The Resolution cites a study produced by Jesse Kennan of the Harvard Graduate School of Design - “Climate gentrification: from theory to empiricism in Miami-Dade County” - which analyzed property value data and found that property values in higher ground areas of the county were seeing higher rates of increase than lower-lying areas.

The Resolution of the Miami City Commission was developed by the Sea Level Rise Committee, which is an advisory group of experts created by the Commission to inform Miami’s sea-level rise adaptation efforts. The Committee includes nine voting members with expertise in engineering, real estate development, climatology or coastal sciences, emergency management, economics, and low-income communities.



Publication Date: November 5, 2018

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