The Freedom Tower is a 17 story, 82,000 square foot building located on the Miami Dade College – Wolfson Campus at 600 Biscayne Blvd. in Miami, Florida. The building was originally constructed in 1925 to house The Miami News and is an example of the Spanish-Renaissance style. In 1962, during the Kennedy administration, the Migration and Refugee Assistance Act was passed.
The Act provided government assistance for the large number of Cuban refugees fleeing the regime of Fidel Castro. The Miami News building, which had been previously vacated by the newspaper, was decided to house the newly formed Cuban Assistance Center and was renamed The Freedom Tower. The center offered medicine and dental care as well as food items and financial assistance to refugees who had come to begin a new life, often with nothing.
The program was phased out in 1974, and the building went through several owners until land developer Pedro Martin purchased and donated to the Miami Dade College in 2005. The building was designated a US National Historic Landmark in 2008.
The building now serves as a museum and exhibition space for the Miami Dade College Museum of Art and Design. The second floor serves as art gallery while the first floor is home to The Cuban Exile Experience: A Journey To Freedom, a permanent exhibition showcasing the struggle of Cuban refugees during the Cold War. Additionally, the Museum often hosts special guest speakers as well as arts and crafts activities for families. The building and its exhibitions are open for free to the public from Tuesday through Saturday between Noon and 5 PM. The Museum offers guided tours at certain times throughout the year.
If traveling to The Freedom Tower from the Miami International Airport by public transit, you will take the Orange Line from Miami Airport to Government Center. Transfer to the Metromover Omni Loop (Northbound). Disembark at the Freedom Tower station.
If traveling to The Freedom Tower from Miami International Airport by car, you will start out going south on NW 42nd Avenue, merge onto Dolphin Expressway/FL-836, then keep to the right to merge onto I-395 East. Take Exit 2A and turn right onto 2nd Avenue. Take the first left onto 11th Ter, then turn right onto Biscayne Blvd. The Freedom Tower will be on the right.a