Cutler Bay, Florida

Coordinates: 25°34′58″N 80°20′48″W / 25.582684°N 80.346799°W / 25.582684; -80.346799
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cutler Bay, Florida
Town of Cutler Bay
Flag of Cutler Bay, Florida
Official seal of Cutler Bay, Florida
"An Excellent Place to Live, Work and Play."[1]
Location in Miami-Dade County and the state of Florida
Location in Miami-Dade County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 25°34′57″N 80°20′48″W / 25.58250°N 80.34667°W / 25.58250; -80.34667
Country United States of America
State Florida
County Miami-Dade
IncorporatedNovember 9, 2005
 • TypeCouncil-Manager
 • MayorTim Meerbott
 • Vice MayorMichael P. Callahan
 • Council MembersRobert "B.J." Duncan,
Suzy Lord, and
Richard Ramirez
 • Town ManagerRafael G. Casals
 • Town ClerkMauricio Melinu
 • Total10.29 sq mi (26.64 km2)
 • Land9.89 sq mi (25.61 km2)
 • Water0.40 sq mi (1.03 km2)
 • Total45,425
 • Density4,594.42/sq mi (1,773.99/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP Codes
33157, 33189, 33190
Area code(s)305, 786, 645
FIPS code12-15968

Cutler Bay is an incorporated town in Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States, established in 2005. With a population of 45,425 as of the 2020 US census,[3] it is part of the Miami metropolitan area of South Florida. Cutler Bay is the 9th most populous of the 34 municipalities that make up Miami's urban core, and the 33rd most populous of the 163 municipalities.[4]


The town was named after Dr. William Cutler of Massachusetts, who visited the area north of the town around 1880 and encouraged others to settle in what became the pioneer town of Cutler.[5]

The Charles Deering Estate, located in nearby Palmetto Bay, contains the Cutler Fossil Site where mammoths, saber-toothed tigers and California condors are among the many fossil records. The park holds archeological evidence of Native American habitation of the land 10,000 years ago.[6] Tequesta burial mounds are also found there.[6] The area called Cutler Ridge had been called the "Hunting Ground" by some of the earliest Caucasian settlers in the area, circa 1825.[7]

In the early 1900s the Florida East Coast Railway was extended south to Cutler, which was located near what is now the Charles Deering Estate. Cutler then served as the place where people settling in the undeveloped Homestead area went to get their supplies.[8]

A close-up view of houses with evident wind damage
Damage from Hurricane Andrew in 1992 in the area now called Cutler Bay

In 1992, Hurricane Andrew made landfall near Cutler Ridge.[9] The storm left the area in "almost total destruction".[10] The dense vegetation near the shore and the dense subdivision development of the area are thought to have been factors which mitigated the extent of areas impacted by flood damage caused by Andrew.[11] However, nearly every building suffered major damage from the wind, and the damage in Florida was estimated at $25 billion, the most expensive natural disaster in US history to that point.[12]

In May 2002, the Cutler Bay Steering Committee company met to discuss the formation of a municipal advisory committee, where the committee would advise on the incorporation of the Cutler Ridge area into the city of Cutler Ridge.[13] The decision to incorporate was spurred in part by the efforts to recover from Hurricane Andrew.[14] The proposed incorporation boundaries included Southwest 184th Street on the north and Southwest 216th and 224th streets on the south.[13] In addition, the west boundary would include the Turnpike, U.S. 1 and Southwest 112th Avenue, and Biscayne Bay would serve as the east boundary.[13]

In April 2005, the Charter committee members looked at over a dozen names for the city, ranging from "Pine Ridge" and "Cutler Bay" to just "Cutler".[15] They reduced the choices to "Cutler Ridge" and "Old Cutler Bay".[15] In November 2005, voters approved the charter and chose the name "Cutler Bay" for the county's 35th municipality, over "Cutler Ridge" by a vote of 1,920 to 1,403.[16] In the months following the name change, many of those born and raised in the area that had been known as Cutler Ridge since the 1870s refused to accept the new name.[17]


Cutler Bay is located at 25°34′58″N 80°20′48″W / 25.582684°N 80.346799°W / 25.582684; -80.346799,[18] just west of Biscayne Bay and 18 miles (29 km) southwest of downtown Miami.

The town's northern border runs from SW 184th Street (Eureka Drive) east of US 1 to the coast. The southern border is SW 232nd Street, north of Black Point Marina, the largest public marina in the Miami area.[8] The town's boundaries include the northeast section of Biscayne National Park,[19] areas formerly known as Cutler Ridge[8] to the west, and the neighborhood and former CDP of Lakes by the Bay[20] to the east. The town is bordered to the north by the village of Palmetto Bay, to the west by unincorporated South Miami Heights, and to the southwest by unincorporated Goulds.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town of Cutler Bay has a total area of 10.3 square miles (27 km2). 9.9 square miles (26 km2) of it are land and 0.4 square miles (1.0 km2) of it (3.87%) are water.[2]

Cutler Ridge, an ancient coral formation, stretches from south Miami, where it rises approximately 22 feet (6.7 m) above sea level, through the Cutler Bay area, at a height of 14 feet (4.3 m), to Homestead, Florida, where it is about 8 feet (2.4 m).[21] Cutler Ridge has been incorporated into the hurricane emergency plans for the area as lands east of the ridge are subject to storm surge, but areas west of the ridge would generally be protected.[21]

Due to Cutler Bay's position in a flat, low-lying coastal wetland area on Biscayne Bay, the area is prone to flooding. During the rainy season, Cutler Bay's many canals, channels, and lakes are frequently full of water, and the groundwater table also is full and close to the surface. Flood hazards include rainfall from tropical storms, hurricanes, and other heavy rain events.[22]


Historical population
U.S. Decennial Census[23]

2020 census[edit]

Cutler Bay racial composition
(Hispanics excluded from racial categories)
(NH = Non-Hispanic)[24]
Race Number Percentage
White (NH) 9,536 20.99%
Black or African American (NH) 4,147 9.13%
Native American or Alaska Native (NH) 20 0.04%
Asian (NH) 949 2.09%
Pacific Islander or Native Hawaiian (NH) 12 0.03%
Some other race (NH) 318 0.70%
Two or more races/Multiracial (NH) 1,149 2.53%
Hispanic or Latino 29,294 64.49%
Total 45,425 100%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 45,425 people, 13,110 households, and 10,215 families residing in the town.

2010 census[edit]

Cutler Bay Demographics
2010 Census Cutler Bay Miami-Dade County Florida
Total population 40,286 2,496,435 18,801,310
Population, percent change, 2000 to 2010 +62.6% +10.8% +17.6%
Population density 4,096.3/sq mi 1,315.5/sq mi 350.6/sq mi
White or Caucasian (including White Hispanic) 77.3% 73.8% 75.0%
(Non-Hispanic White or Caucasian) 28.5% 15.4% 57.9%
Black or African-American 14.2% 18.9% 16.0%
Hispanic or Latino (of any race) 54.5% 65.0% 22.5%
Asian 2.3% 1.5% 2.4%
Native American or Native Alaskan 0.2% 0.2% 0.4%
Pacific Islander or Native Hawaiian 0.1% 0.0% 0.1%
Two or more races (multiracial) 3.2% 2.4% 2.5%
Some other race 2.7% 3.2% 3.6%

In 2010, the population distribution was: 6.8% under 5 years old, 25.8% under the age of 18, and 10.6% 65 years of age or older. Females were 51.7% of the population. The median income for a household was $61.370. The per capita income for the town was $25,193. About 10.5% of the population were below the poverty line.[25] As of 2015, there were 13,935 households, out of which 7.8% were vacant.[26]

2000 census[edit]

As of 2000, speakers of English as a first language accounted for 58.89%, while Spanish made up 38.18%, and French Creole comprised 1.31% of the population.[27] According to the latest American Community Survey of 2008–2012 conducted by the US Census Bureau, the percentage of people who spoke English as their main language was of 44.1%, while Spanish speakers were at 50.4% of the population, and other languages accounted for 5.5%.[28]

Government and infrastructure[edit]

Cutler Bay is governed by a five-member Town Council and operates under a Council-Manager form of government. Three Council Members are elected to represent specific residential areas (Seats 1, 2 & 3) and must reside in their respective area. The Mayor and the Vice Mayor may reside anywhere in the Town. Town Council elections are non-partisan. As the legislative body of the Town, the Town Council determines policy, adopts the annual budget and makes laws.[29] The Miami-Dade Police Department operates the South District Station in Cutler Bay.[30]

In January 2006, Cutler Bay elected former Florida state legislator John F. Cosgrove as its first mayor. Mayor Cosgrove died on April 19, 2006, while vacationing in Zimbabwe.[31] Vice Mayor Paul Vrooman assumed the position of Mayor. In November 2010, Edward P. MacDougall was elected Mayor from Vice Mayor. Prior to incorporation Edward MacDougall chaired the municipal charter committee which set the Town's charter. In November 2014, Peggy Bell, who was one of the original Council Members when Cutler Bay was incorporated, was elected Mayor and served as Mayor until she reached her term limits in November 2018.[32][33] Elected in November 2018, the current office of Mayor is held by former Council member Tim Meerbott.[34]

The community bought an office building, Cutler Bay Town Center, circa 2010; in 2020 the building was about 33% occupied. The city government planned to make money by leasing space in the building, but buyers did not materialize. In 2020, with the support of many residents, the Town traded the building for 16 acres (6.5 ha) of land, with the vision to transform it into a park and municipal complex.[35]


Primary and secondary schools[edit]

Miami-Dade County Public Schools operates public schools.

Elementary schools in the town limits include:

  • Bel-Aire Elementary School
  • Cutler Ridge Elementary School
  • Gulfstream Elementary School
  • Dr. Edward L. Whigham Elementary School
  • Whispering Pines Elementary School

Cutler Bay Middle School and Cutler Bay Senior High School are in Cutler Bay. Prior to 2012 Cutler Bay had two middle schools (Centennial and Cutler Ridge), and Miami Southridge High School was the zoned school. Centennial was converted into a high school and Cutler Ridge became the sole middle school of Cutler Bay.[36]

The charter school Mater Academy Cutler Bay is in Cutler Bay.[37]

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Miami operates Catholic schools. Our Lady of the Holy Rosary-St. Richard School, a K–8 school, is in Cutler Bay.[38][39]

Colleges and universities[edit]


The Miami Herald provides news coverage for the town under the Cutler Bay heading of its "Miami-Dade Communities" section.

Surrounding areas[edit]

  Palmetto Bay
  West Perrine Palmetto Bay
Unincorporated Miami-Dade County, South Miami Heights, Goulds   Biscayne Bay
  Goulds, Princeton Lakes by the Bay
  Unincorporated Miami-Dade County, Lakes by the Bay


  1. ^ "Cutler Bay, Florida". City of North Lauderdale (Website, May 12, 2007-February 21, 2015) via Wayback Machine. Archived from the original on February 21, 2015. Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "2022 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Florida". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 29, 2022.
  3. ^ a b "P1. Race – Cutler Bay town, Florida: 2020 DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171)". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 29, 2022.
  4. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved November 18, 2021.
  5. ^ "Cutler Bay History".
  6. ^ a b Hammer, Roger L. (May 15, 2005). A Falconguide to Everglades National Park and the Surrounding Area: A Guide to Exploring the Great Outdoors. Globe Pequot Press. pp. 154–. ISBN 9780762734320. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  7. ^ Blank, Joan (1996). Key Biscayne: A History of Miami's Tropical Island and the Cape Florida Lighthouse. Pineapple Press Inc. pp. 72–. ISBN 9781561640966. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  8. ^ a b c Bramson, Seth; Jensen, Bob (2013). Homestead, Florida: From Railroad Boom to Sonic Boom. The History Press. pp. 135, 15. ISBN 9781626191877. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  9. ^ Green, Jen (January 1, 2005). Hurricane Andrew. Gareth Stevens Pub. pp. 4–. ISBN 9780836844979. Retrieved January 26, 2014.
  10. ^ Provenzo, Eugene F. Jr. (July 1, 1995). Hurricane Andrew, the Public Schools, and the Rebuilding of Community. SUNY Press. pp. 86–. ISBN 9780791424827. Retrieved January 26, 2014.
  11. ^ Agency, Federal Emergency Management. Hurricane Andrew in Florida Building Performance Observations, Recommendations, and Technical Guidance. FEMA. pp. 38–. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  12. ^ Roberson, William G. (September 29, 2014). Block by Block: The Challenges of Urban Operations. Maroon Ebooks. pp. 408–. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  13. ^ a b c "Ridge Group To Discuss Forming Mac", Miami Herald, p. 4, May 5, 2002, retrieved January 25, 2014
  14. ^ Kemp, Roger L. (February 21, 2013). Town and Gown Relations: A Handbook of Best Practices. McFarland. pp. 67–. ISBN 9781476601700. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  15. ^ a b "Around Miami-Dade County", Miami Herald, p. 3B, April 13, 2005, retrieved January 25, 2014
  16. ^ "Cutler Ridge morphed into Cutler Bay on Tuesday", Miami Herald, p. B3, November 9, 2005, retrieved January 25, 2014
  17. ^ Yudy Pineiro (November 10, 2005), "Cutler Bay: 'Ridge Rats' Scoff At Name Change", Miami Herald, p. B3, retrieved January 25, 2014
  18. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  19. ^ "Maps Biscayne National Park (U.S. National Park Service)". National Park Service ( National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior. Retrieved June 28, 2017.
  20. ^ "Cutler Bay Aerial Board - Revised". Town of Cutler Bay. Retrieved June 25, 2017.
  21. ^ a b Wilson, Jennifer J.; Travers, James P. (January 1997). Hurricane Andrew: South Florida and Louisiana, August 23-26, 1992: Natural Disaster Survey Report. DIANE Publishing. pp. 54–. ISBN 9780788130731. Retrieved January 26, 2014.
  22. ^ "Cutler Bay, FL - Flood Awareness". Town of Cutler Bay. Retrieved June 25, 2017.
  23. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Retrieved April 19, 2014.
  24. ^ "Explore Census Data". Retrieved February 8, 2022.
  25. ^ "Cutler Bay (town), Florida". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 25 June 2012. Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  26. ^ Bureau, U.S. Census. "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 28, 2017.
  27. ^ "MLA Data Center Results of Cutler Bay (Cutler Ridge,) FL". Retrieved November 3, 2007.
  28. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  29. ^ "Cutler Bay, FL : Town Council". Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  30. ^ "South District Station Archived 2010-01-27 at the Wayback Machine." Miami-Dade Police Department. Retrieved on March 12, 2010.
  31. ^ "Past National President John Cosgrove enters Chapter Eternal at 56". April 18, 2007.
  32. ^ "Cutler Bay has a new mayor and councilman after Tuesday's runoff election". miamiherald. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  33. ^ "Bell wins mayor's office in Cutler Bay". miamiherald. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  34. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on January 18, 2015. Retrieved January 18, 2015.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  35. ^ Lefever, Bailey (January 27, 2020). "Officials hope land swap will help Cutler Bay preserve green space, build new town hall". Miami Herald. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  36. ^ Stein, Perry (September 23, 2011). "Cutler Bay On Track for New High School". Miami Herald. - Print version: Stein, Perry (September 25, 2011). "Deal for new high school is drawing near". Miami Herald. pp. 4SE, 47SE. - Clipping of first and of second page at
  37. ^ "Mater Academy Bay".
  38. ^ "Zoning Map". Cutler Bay, Florida. Retrieved May 6, 2020.
  39. ^ "Home". Our Lady of the Holy Rosary-St. Richard. Retrieved May 6, 2020.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]