Proper lighting throughout our community is very important. Paramount in the minds of most people is that proper lighting creates a safer feeling environment.
One of the perennial challenges faced by the City of Sunny Isles Beach is ensuring that the street lights along Collins Avenue are properly functioning. What makes this such a challenge is that the City does not own the street lights and cannot effectuate repairs of them.
The street lights, which sit in the Florida Department of Transportation right of way, are (depending on the type of pole) owned by either Florida Power and Light (FPL) or the Miami-Dade County Department of Public Works (MDPW), and are maintained by those respective entities. We value the good service provided to us and the good relationships that we have with both entities. When a streetlight goes out, we the City report the situation to the appropriate entity. Most times they will respond quickly and the light will be working again in short order.
But there are times when both MDPW and FPL say that the problem lies with the other entity’s equipment. This scenario creates an untenable situation for the City. We continue to suffer with our non-functioning lights while FPL and MDPW try to work out their differences. In our opinion, that process takes too long, while our lights are still not working.
The City is setting up a meeting with FPL and MDPW to discuss how we can better manage equipment failures in our community. How can we better communicate the City’s needs, how can FPL and MDPW come to a resolution on joint and individual responsibilities more quickly, how can we resolve disagreements etc.? The aim is to create a new paradigm that results in better service for our community and better working relationships all around. In the meantime, if you see a streetlight out and would like to report it to MDPW, please call 305- 592-3470 and select option 3 to report the outage.
While on the subject of light, we are looking for ways to improve lighting throughout our community. In cooperation with the Citizens Advisory Committee, we are identifying areas that would benefit from more lighting. In the coming months we will be upgrading some existing lighting and installing new lighting where needed. If you have any suggestions for us, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.