"Genius in urban streetscape transformation; a true inspiration. Concentric circles of stone paving with seating bollards and art, playfully layered together, create a delicate beauty, rich in texture, unexpected color, and irregularity. A ripple effect of success – just loved it.The City of Coral Gables and the local business improvement district commissioned a streetscape design project and asked the design team to 'create a pair of streets like no other in the world'.” These were the comments from one of the Judges of the Natural Stone Institute Pinnacle Award of Excellence about the Miracle Mile and Giralda Avenue Streetscape Coral Gables renovation.
Photograph: City of Coral Gables
The concept for Miracle Mile was inspired by the poetry of George Merrick and the desire to create the effect of a walk in the clouds. The paving pattern is a reflection of the sky above, as seen in the gap between the edge of the Live Oak tree canopy and storefront cornices along the sidewalk. It is a coordinated palette of five quartzite types that were anchored by Azul Macaubas. The size of stones and module of the pattern were critical to the ability to realize the vision of the project.
Giralda Plaza complements Miracle Mile and celebrates regional climatic conditions. Its stone pattern is composed of six colors of granite, creating massive raindrops that reflect the diurnal changing colors of the sky. Paving on both streets was installed in its natural state so that when dry, stones appear soft and muted but when it rains, the streetscapes explode in color to defy the blanket of gray skies above. Shell Reef stone furniture was designed to double as bollards that keep cars in their place. The sides of every piece were blasted to bring out the texture and fossils in the stone, and to remind us of the age of the pieces in honor of the timeless qualities of Coral Gables. The tops were filled and honed so that residents and visitors are invited to touch and sit on them without worry of damaging refined clothing. The heights of all seating tops vary throughout the project to accommodate people of all ages.
Natural Stone Institute Member Company: Earl Jackson Architecture Workshop Allenhurst (Architects)
Other Project Team Members
Cooper Robertson & Partners (Architect)
Rodriguez and Quiroga (Architect of Record)
Local Office Landscape Geomantic Designs (Landscape Architects)
UMI & Thor Granitos (Stone Suppliers)
Earth Surfaces of America (Stone Fabricator)
Custom Tile and Marble (Stone Installer)
Stone & Equipment (Stone Furniture)
Stone Trends International (Stone Consultant)