Miami Beach Adopts New Strict Rules to ‘End Spring Break’

Miami Beach officials, reeling from years of unruly crowds and violence during spring break, say they’ve had enough. They’re cracking down on the chaos with strict new rules aimed at ending the party.

“Our message is simple,” Miami Beach Police Chief Wayne Jones said in a statement. “We want people to enjoy their time here, but will not tolerate the behavior we have witnessed in the past few years.”

Last year, there were over 300 arrests in Miami Beach between February 27 and March 20, according to media reports. Two fatal shootings prompted former Mayor Dan Gelber to defiantly declare: “We don’t ask for spring break in our city. We don’t want spring break in our city.”

Highlights of the “Break Up Spring Break” initiative

Officials say the entire month of March has been designated a “high-impact period.” To curb rowdy behavior, Miami Beach will implement stringent measures like increased parking fees at city-owned lots and an 8PM closing time for liquor stores in the entertainment district, every Thursday through Sunday during March. These restrictions will impact Miami Music Week if you happen to be staying in South Beach. Other highlights include:

Limited Beach Access – Only 5th, 10th, and 12th street entrances on Ocean Drive will be open to visitors. These entrances will close at 6PM. Coolers, inflatable devices, tents, tables and similar objects are prohibited on the beach. Bag checks will be conducted at checkpoints to enforce the ban on prohibited items.

Heightened Police Presence – Enhanced enforcement and increased towing to hit streets throughout March, with residents prioritized.

Tightening the screws during for two weekends

Miami Beach officials expect the largest spring break crowds to arrive between March 7-10 and March 14-17. They’re implementing their strictest rules during those two weekends. Thankfully, Miami Music Week falls after both of these weeks.

The parking rate at city garages and surface lots increases to $100. Non-resident towing will double to $516 for vehicles towed in South Beach. Sidewalk cafes on Ocean Drive will shut down on peak weekends. Additionally, Ocean Drive will only be accessible to vehicles via 13 Street with a sole exit at 5 Street.

“Everyone is invited to enjoy the beauty and hospitality of our City,” Miami Beach Mayor Steven Meiner said in a statement. “But we are a law and order City and we will enforce our laws all year round, including during March’s Spring Break.”