HomeLocalEngineer Fernando Vazquez runs for Key Biscayne Council

Engineer Fernando Vazquez runs for Key Biscayne Council

As an engineer, Fernando Vazquez was a contractor who helped put together some of the island’s goals for combating sea level rise. 

Now, he says he’s running for Village Council to help put them in place. 

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“We have to move forward,” he said. “I’m running because I think the manager is going to need my support at the commission.” 

Vazquez, 60, was a regional vice president of AECOM, the village’s environmental consulting firm, which has a $131,000 consulting contract with Key Biscayne. 

In February, along with village officials, he presented overall goals that were adopted unanimously by the Village Council – a set of targets that specify how quickly drainage systems must remove water as sea levels rise. He said he would not accept any industry campaign contributions and left AECOM for a different company in June. 

Vazquez also served on the Undergrounding Task Force, which eventually recommended pursuing a $46 million plan to bury power and telecommunications lines.

He hails from Boston and has worked on many large projects, including that city’s “Big Dig.” He served as city engineer for Miami Beach, overseeing that city’s stormwater master plan. 

On the issue of raising the island’s debt cap, Vazquez said the island needed to proceed cautiously and held off on taking a position. “I don’t think we are in a position now to make those assertions,” he said. 

“We can’t go off and shoot out bonds,” he said. “We need capital money from the federal government, every dollar possible.”

Vazquez is the fourth person to file papers to run for three seats on the council, although the formal qualifying period opens Aug. 15 and closes Aug. 25.

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Tony Winton is the editor-in-chief of the Key Biscayne Independent and president of Miami Fourth Estate, Inc. He worked previously at The Associated Press for three decades winning multiple Edward R. Murrow awards. He was president of the News Media Guild, a journalism union, for 10 years. Born in Chicago, he is a graduate of Columbia University. His interests are photography and technology, sailing, cooking, and science fiction.

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