Bayfront Park is located in the heart of downtown Miami, on beautiful Biscayne Bay. It is bounded on the north by Bayside Marketplace, on the south by Hotel InterContinental, on the east by Biscayne Bay and on the west by Biscayne Boulevard. Redesigned in the early 1980's by Isamu Noguchi and managed by Bayfront Park Management Trust, Bayfront Park is 32 acres of lush greenery, with a small sand beach, a tropical rock garden and waterfall (dating back to 1926), a cascading fountain, a Light Tower, and many different monuments commemorating events and people throughout history. The list of the monuments includes the Challenger Memorial, Veterans’ Memorial, Mildred and Claude Pepper Fountain, statues of Claude Pepper and Christopher Columbus, Centennial Time Capsule, and four plaques commemorating, respectively, the assassination of Chicago Mayor Anton Cermack, the park’s dedication, Stobo DePass Curry’s contribution to the park’s creation, and Isamu Noguchi ’s involvement in the design.
Recognized as the 20th Century’s foremost American sculptor, Isamu Noguchi’s innovative parks, plazas, playgrounds, fountains, gardens and public pieces are located in many different countries and celebrated around the world. He designed Bayfront Park to be “a park for the people — may it take its place as a wedge of art into the heart of the New World.” Bayfront Park contains three significant Noguchi sculptures: the Slide Mantra, the Challenger Memorial and the Light Tower. The Slide Mantra is a 10 foot high, white carrara marble slide, weighing 29 tons. This slide demonstrates Noguchi’s long held belief that play could lead to a new appreciation of sculpture. The Challenger Memorial is a white, metal pipe tower that rises approximately 100 feet out of the park’s southwest corner. The sculpture is dedicated to the memory of the Challenger astronauts and makes allusions to the double helix DNA molecule and the twisting contrails of NASA’s doomed spacecraft. The Light Tower is representative of Noguchi’s earlier work with monumental shapes and their interaction with light. The forty foot, aubergine tower makes references to Japanese lanterns and the full moon over Miami.
Bayfront Park is the host site for many special events. The Park fronts onto Biscayne Boulevard (Miami's “main street”), and is three blocks from Interstate I-95. The park is easily accessible by Miami-Dade County public transportation (Metrorail, Tri-Rail, and Metro-Bus), and is located next door to Bayside Marketplace -- a General Development Corporation that attracts 12 million people per year.