Remember when Miami Beach was affordable?
After "Miami Vice" captured the nation's attention and just before Madonna and the supermodels hit the dance floor at Liquid, Miami Beach was a shabby paradise with affordable apartments and an armada of retirees.
Obviously, it wasn't to last: from "God's Waiting Room" sprung a velvet-roped, condo-filled Disneyland for the rich, as our colleagues termed Manhattan and San Francisco. From development along Government Cut, at the bayside marina, up West Avenue, oceanside north of Ocean Drive, and all the way up Collins Avenue, Miami Beach has turned into prime real estate for padded pocketbooks, squeezing out residents with lower incomes.
Check out the difference 20 years makes thanks to the United States Census Explorer. The darkest areas indicate those with a median household income of $75,000 per year or more; the lightest areas denote a median household income of $35,000 per year or less:
One reason for the big increase in exclusivity? Check out how many new towers went up in the South of Fifth neighborhood between 1995 and 2011: