Two-tower residential, hotel and retail complex in downtown Miami up for vote
By Yudislaidy Fernandez
A local developer looks at the credit crisis and real estate bust as a perfect opportunity to lay plans to build a two-tower residential, hotel and retail complex in downtown Miami — once markets bounce back.
The city commission is to vote today (4/23) on plans for the mixed-use project at 1700 Biscayne Blvd., between Northeast 17th Street and 17th Terrace west of the boulevard.
An investor group listed as Biscayne Arts LLC, Brickell North Investments Inc. and Miami Proarts II Inc. plans to build the complex comprised of one 603-foot tower facing Biscayne to hold 261 residential units and 289 hotel rooms, the permit application shows.
The 543-foot second tower to face Northeast Second Avenue is to have another 358 residences.
The project is to include 140,281 square feet of retail and 1,369 parking spaces.
Project investor James Goldstein, CEO of Midgard Development Group — builders of 79-loft condo The Bank at 8101 Biscayne Blvd. — said the property is well-located to fill the needs of a growing, more viable downtown.
"There are no immediate markets for the project," he said. "But projects like these are done years in advance."
A major use special permit is valid two years, followed by two two-year extensions.
The site's current users include a Burger King, an office building and an exposition venue to open soon, Mr. Goldstein said.
The plan is to build once the credit and real estate markets rebound and more housing is absorbed, he said.
"We will like to be earlier in the (market) curve than later," he said.
Construction could begin in two to three years, he said.
"No financing is in place at this time," he said, adding jokingly: "I know there isn't any financing in the planet right now."