Surfside baffled over $1 million cost to remove sand from beach

For Miami Herald.

Surfside has been stuck in the sand — or at least it’s how many residents feel.

In March, a developer, Fort Capital, dug up sand from underneath the construction site on 9011 Collins Ave., the site of a hotel and condominium called the Surf Club. Florida law says excavated sand must be placed near the site from which it came. As such, the developer spread the sand over Surfside’s public beach.

But many residents said the sand was completely different, even calling it dirt. To them, the beach was no longer the same. Florida law also says the sand must be compatible with the existing sand.

Residents grew more concerned when toxicology reports indicated levels of arsenic higher than state residential guidelines. Experts hired by town staff and Miami-Dade County Health Department, however, said the sand posed a low risk to human or pet health.

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