Above, the electronic mesh advertising billboard sign on the facade above the entrance gates to the AmericanAirlines Arena in downtown Miami around 4 p.m. Tuesday afternoon before that night's Pacers-Heat playoff game. All photos on this post were taken Tuesday May 15, 2012, all by South Beach Hoosier.
Besides a lack of scoring coming off the bench, the other reasons the Miami Heat lost at home Tuesday night to the Pacers in Game 2 -palm tree karma and simple math.
The number of playoff games left for the Miami Heat to win the 2012 NBA title going into the best-of-seven series against the Indiana Pacers was 12, but on Tuesday afternoon, with under 4 hours to go before Game 2, already up one game to none, the total was 11, not the 12 that was indicated on the (illegal) signs placed on the palm trees in front of the arena on Biscayne Blvd., opposite The Freedom Tower.
There should've already been an "X" marked thru this number.
Above, looking west towards Biscayne Blvd. from in front of the AAA, and at bottom, looking south from there towards The Freedom Tower and downtown Miami.
|Looking east and upwards towards the AAA from the sidewalk along Biscayne Blvd.|
It had glare written all over it, and the closer I got to downtown, the more it was obvious to me that it was one of those days that make sunglasses a must, even for kids.
And yet I saw plenty of tourists walking around near Bayside and the Port of Miami without them, squinting like crazy, which I'm sure will show up in many of the photos they shot that day, once they got home.
Having already read the illegal signage story in the Miami Herald the previous week about the Heat, largely owned by the state's wealthiest person, Micky Arison, once again throwing their weight around and acting like they were above local laws, as I went past the area in the morning, I knew I'd have to swing by later to take another first-hand look at what was what.
City tells Miami Heat to remove tire ads wrapped on palm trees at arena
By Andres Viglucci
May 10, 2012
The Miami Heat must have missed the news: The Miami Commission killed a measure two weeks ago that could have allowed advertising banners to be placed on trees.
That didn’t stop the team from wrapping the trunks of 16 royal palms in front of the publicly owned American Airlines Arena on Biscayne Boulevard with ads for Kumho tires. City officials say the ads are illegal.
On Wednesday, just before game five of the Heat’s first-round playoff series with the New York Knicks, code enforcement officers ordered the team to take down the white banners, which carry the slogan “DRIVE to the CHAMPIONSHIP’’ printed sideways above the image of a car tire and a Heat flaming-basketball logo.
“Not very catchy,’’ opined assistant city manager Alice Bravo.
And not very legal, either, she said. The team, which manages the arena, didn’t apply for permits, Bravo said.
Even if it had, Miami-Dade County’s sign ordinance, which applies inside the city as well as in unincorporated areas, frowns upon signs of any kind on trees. Under a section entitled “Prohibited signs,’’ the code reads: “No sign shall be attached to trees.’’
The county owns the arena, but the city is supposed to enforce the Miami-Dade sign ordinance inside its own borders.
The team could be fined if the banners aren’t gone by Thursday, Bravo said, though the city prefers to achieve compliance first. She did not know how long the signs have been up.
The Heat, however, refused to take the signs down. In a statement Wednesday, spokeswoman Lorrie-Ann Diaz said the team would remove the “sponsorship message’’ from the banners but leave them up “until the end of the playoff run’’ while applying for a permit.
Bravo said she was uncertain whether the tree banners without an advertising component would be permissible on the arena property itself, but added that she believes draping banners on palms on the public sidewalk is not. The festooned trees are on both the arena steps and the sidewalk out front.
The Kumho tire ads, in any case, remained up as crowds of fans arrived for the game Wednesday night.
The ads-on-palms flap comes amid growing controversy over the proliferation and legality of LED billboards and other outdoor ads locally, especially in and around downtown Miami. Billboard opponents, county planning administrators and county attorney Robert Cuevas say the county ordinance bars electronic ad billboards, which the city has approved.
More recently, the city commission gave preliminary approval to LED billboards on the Gusman theater downtown, the Miami Children’s Hospital and the Knight Center, as well as in city parks. But on April 26, facing public criticism, the board killed a measure intended to allow ads on parking pay stations and bicycle-rental kiosks that was so broadly worded that it could have permitted them as well on fire hydrants, public buildings, bridges and even shade trees.
Also in violation of the rules, the critics say: The Heat’s digital mesh on the arena facade. The electronic sign, also permitted by the city, shows ads for Goya products, Kia cars, Office Depot and Kumho. But the county’s sign code explicitly disallows ads for goods and services unavailable at the site, Cuevas said in a recent legal opinion.
Cuevas’ memo said enforcement is up to Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and the county commission.
The elected officials, however, have not taken action.
On Wednesday, an anti-billboard group, Scenic Miami-Dade, filed a complaint with Gimenez’s office over the Heat’s palm-tree ads. The letter opened with a single word: “Disgusting.’’
As we all know, this is NOT the first time the Heat acted like they owned the property and built everything themselves, when that is not the case. It's a county-subsidized building.
I Team: County Receives Nothing From Heat, Arena Revenue
Reporting Jim DeFede
May 5, 2011 10:52 PM
Related article and video is at:
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