MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - There is a building battle happening in South Florida with residents pushing back against a proposal to demolish landmarks on Miami Beach.

The fear for many people is that the landmarks that make the area special, could quickly be replaced with towering buildings.

A group of about 50 people rallied on Ocean Drive to voice their opposition to Senate Bill 1346 and House Bill 1317, Tuesday morning.

Both bills would essentially gut existing preservation laws statewide, which would allow property owners the right to demolish buildings, historic or not, in coastal high-hazard areas that fail to meet current Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood standards for new construction.

“This is living art, this is what people come to see in Miami Beach. This is something very, very important. Miami Beach Art Deco District is the soul of Miami,” said resident Lila Bobic.

Only buildings on the National Register of Historic Places will be protected. On Miami Beach, there are seven buildings with that designation.

“We want to protect what makes this place so vital and beautiful and really is an economic engine to our whole region, so we just say stay off, go away and don’t come back,” said Daniel Ciraldo, who is with the Miami Design Preservation League.

According to the bills’ sponsor, he said it’s about safety and resilience.

Critics, on the other hand, argue that it’s all about the money.

“Bryan Avila, the Senator sponsor, he rushed this bill through. He didn’t meet with any of us. He didn’t meet with property owners of the Art Deco buildings,” said Ciraldo, “He just wants to cancel Miami Beach, and we’re hear to say, ‘No, we are not going anywhere. Hands off our history.'”

“Ocean Drive is not going to get bulldozed. We’re simply talking about structures that have been deemed unsafe by the local building official that have been deemed that they should be demolished by the local building department and that are in a FEMA flood zone area,” said Avila.

“It’s always about the money,” said Bobic.

Florida Senator Ileana Garcia, who represents part of Miami Beach supported the bill. Meanwhile, Democratic senator Shevrin Jones was absent for the vote but tried to amend the vote to include local designations.

The Senate Bill passed with bipartisan support last week, while the house version of the bill has not been heard on the floor.

There are only a few days left of session in the Florida Legislature. It remains unclear if the house version will be heard.

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