An 82-story tower known as 2nd & 2nd was granted approval last week when Miami’s Office of Zoning granted waivers needed from the Miami 21 zoning code.

A notice issued on the city’s website confirmed the approval was issued November 26. Plans for the tower were first submitted in July 2017, making it 16 months of review.

If construction were to begin today, it would become the tallest building in Miami at its proposed 898-foot height. Brickell’s Panorama Tower is now the tallest at 868 feet, although several buildings are proposed above the 1,000-foot mark including Skyrise, where excavation is underway.

A Courtyard by Marriott hotel would need to be demolished to make way for the new 2nd & 2nd tower.

As reviewed by the UDRB earlier this year, the development would encompass more than 1.5 million square feet, including:

  • 266 hotel rooms
  • 637 residential units
  • 9,245 square feet of retail
  • 553 parking spaces

Convention Center Hotel Corp. of Yonkers, NY submitted the plans. The developer is a subsidiary of AVR Realty. NBWW is the architect.

Courtyard by Marriott to be demolished:

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Source: The Next Miami

Over the past five years, major upgrades to quality of life in Aventura have set the stage for another decade of growth in residential and commercial properties, and a population increase as the quality of life rises again.

The city itself has committed to spending millions of dollars over the next five years on improvements. Nearly $3 million is going directly to local parks. Waterways Park, Veterans Park and Founders Park will undergo renovations which include new playground equipment, updated drainage, new turf and more.

Just over $4 million will be used for transportation improvements, such as road resurfacing, new pedestrian walkways and lighting, and improvements to improve traffic flow along major roadways. About 30-plus roads will be addressed, including Aventura Boulevard, Country Club Drive and more.

The city purchased 2 acres from the Gulfstream Park Racing Association last year on which to build the city’s first high school. The charter school of 800 students is scheduled to open in fall 2019 as Soffer Aventura High School.

Retail Expansion

A new three-story wing expansion has opened to the public at Aventura Mall. It adds restaurants, retail stores, art, an outdoor fountain and a 93-foot tall slide among other attractions (PHOTO CREDIT: MATIAS J. OCNER | File, Dec. 18, 2017)

Aventura Mall is creating a more immersive shopping experience. A three-level expansion wing facing the William Lehman Causeway has opened with a two-level Topshop, Zara and restaurants that include CVI.CHE 105 and Genuine Pizza, a casual restaurant by James Beard Award-winner Michael Schwartz. Another 11 stores and restaurants have opened or are coming, including International Smoke by Ayesha Curry and chef Michael Mina, Schutz Shoes, and Diveto Ristorante.

Topping them off is a 93-foot outdoor, spiral slide designed by Belgian artist Carsten Höller. The nine-story ride, which takes only 15 seconds, is free to anyone 50 inches or taller. The mall plans to add more interactive art installations in coming years.

Developer Seritage Growth Properties is building on the former Sears store site at Aventura Mall. The first phase will feature the ground-level development of 215,000 square feet of U.S. and international retailers, entertainment and dining in an open-air setting. An additional 100,000 square feet is planned on the 12.3 acre site that faces William Lehman Causeway and Biscayne Boulevard.

The rich and famous are taking note. NBA stars Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem celebrated the grand opening of the first 800 Degrees Woodfired Kitchen in Florida, in September. The 4,000-square-foot restaurant, which sits on 199th Street, seats 125 people and features a full bar.

Residential Construction

Just to the south, Turnberry Isle Miami kicked off a number of improvements late last year. Plans include a new 16-story luxury building, upgrades to the main lobby and resort facilities. The investment tops $175 million.

Aventura ParkSquare and Prive at Island Estates are bringing a city-within-a-city lifestyle to Aventura. Prive opened on a previously undeveloped island in January. The 150- unit project has 35,000 square feet of amenities between the two towers, plus outdoor amenities.

The 7.4-acre Aventura ParkSquare at the corner of Waterways Boulevard and Northeast 207th Street consists of five buildings. They include a new luxury condominium with 131 residences; 100,000 square feet of Class A office space; 55,000 square feet of ground-level retail and restaurant space; a 45,000-square-foot medical center; a luxury senior living tower; and a 207-room Starwood Aloft Hotel.

Aloft is just one of several new hotels. The 233-room AC Hotel Miami Aventura north of the mall opened in July 2017. The 192-room Aventura Hilton Hotel, just to the south of the mall, will soon break ground.

 

Source: Miami Herald

A hotel made of stacked shipping containers is being proposed on a riverfront lot in Downtown Miami for a new “hip” boutique development called The Ship Yard.

The shipping containers would be stacked seven stories high and converted into guest rooms, according to a presentation submitted to the Miami River Commission. That is shorter than the 12 stories permitted by zoning on the lot.

A gourmet food court with food served from converted shipping containers will be surrounded by “zen-like” gardens and landscaping. There will also be a bar area, pool area, sundeck and hot tub. Renderings also appear to show a new river walk.

Melo Group’s partially completed Flagler On The River restaurant complex is across the river, along with The Wharf.

A hearing by the River Commission is scheduled November 5.

 

Source: The Next Miami

Israel’s Mishorim Development Group is preparing to develop a mixed-use project after closing on the purchase of a parking garage.

Mishorim paid $18,250,000 for the Suntrust Annex garage. Crocker Partners was the seller. Real estate broker Shai Ben Ami represented Mishorim in the transaction. Mishorim, has holdings in Israel, the U.S. and Canada, and is led by CEO Gil Blutrich.

According to Ben Ami, Mishorim has retained the services of Kobi Karp to design a mixed-use project for the site. It will include hotel, residential, and “great retail.” The 247,000-square-foot garage, located at 255 Northeast First Street, is situated on a 37,500-square foot lot.

The property is across from the Yotel development site, and a block and a half away from the Waldorf Astoria development site. Buildable square footage for the Mishorim site totals 1.35 million square feet, which includes zoning for 860 residential units.

Blutrich and Ben Ami also own the 4,350-square-foot retail space at the 37-story Centro tower nearby. They secured two leases for that space five months after purchasing it at $75.00 per square foot, which is believed to be among the highest retail rents for Downtown Miami.

 

Source: The Next Miami

Frank Cestero is in a sweet spot. The Puerto Rican gets to enjoy the warm, tropical weather of Palm Beach County in the US state of Florida, while the small company he works for is booming thanks to robust growth in the global renewable energy sector.

Cestero is the chief financial officer (CFO) of SolarTech Universal, headquartered in the coastal city of Riviera Beach. Founded in 2012, SolarTech‘s panels are made using advanced robotics and solar cell technology designed by the company’s European partner, Meyer Burger, a Swiss firm operating in Germany and Singapore.

Its cutting-edge equipment allows the green energy company to focus on the premium end of the market. That seems to be working out. SolarTech will be adding a second production line by the end of the year, creating an expected 70 new jobs in the process.

“Demand is robust,” said Cestero. “We’re very bullish over the next 24 months.”

Favorable Business Climate

Governments and businesses have increasingly set their sights on harnessing the power of the sun to meet their energy needs. Furthermore, government policy changes in response to climate change have created incentives and mandates at the local, state and national levels.

Technological improvements, meanwhile, have slashed solar power production costs, making it more accessible to commercial and residential customers. Demand for clean power has also been on the rise over the past several years, with consumers seeing the benefits of shifting to clean sources of energy and decentralized power distribution.

Against this backdrop, companies big and small are optimistic about the future. Market players like CED Greentech, a large US solar panel distributor and SolarTech customer, have increased their investments over the past couple of months.

“The market is pretty dynamic,” said Tristan Tedford, a CED Greentech account manager setting up shop in Pompano Beach, a city just north of Fort Lauderdale. “Module prices have dropped and you have an emerging electric vehicle market coming.”

The Trump Tariffs

The industry’s growth and increasing strategic significance, coupled with complaints from American solar manufacturers about unfair trade competition, were all a part of the reason why US President Donald Trump zeroed in on solar panels, among other products, for tariffs in early 2018.

“The tariff narrowed the price gap between the Chinese product and US product and by highlighting the US product, it has increased awareness of US-made products among end-users and middle-market buyers,” Cestero said.

He claims that by the end of this year SolarTech will be the only domestic manufacturer of exclusively US-made panels, with over 70 percent of its inputs sourced domestically. This is significant because it gives a niche player like SolarTech access to the lucrative public sector, as state and local governments strive to meet CO2-reduction targets by increasing public investment in green energy.

Industry Backlash

But some in the US solar industry have aggressively pushed back against Trump‘s tariffs. One example is SunPower, which is majority-owned by French oil giant Total. The San Jose-based company threatened to curtail its new capital investments and slash jobs if it didn’t receive an exemption from Trump‘s tariffs.

The company builds most of its solar products in Mexico and the Philippines and has argued that the millions of dollars it would pay in import duties threatened its growth plans. After months of lobbying the Trump administration, SunPower received an exemption from the tariffs, boosting the firm’s stock price.

A Solar Slowdown?

The latest industry figures value the US solar sector at $28 billion (€24.13 billion). The industry employs more than 250,000 Americans, with about 40 percent of those working in installation and 20 percent in manufacturing. Five years ago, the sector was installing 3,000 megawatts of solar capacity annually. In 2017, the market grew by as much as 10,000 megawatts.

But experts fear this kind of growth will soon be a thing of the past. Dan Whitten, a spokesman for the US Solar Energy Industries Association, said that since January, more than $2.5 billion in solar projects have been canceled and roughly 9,000 American jobs have either been lost or have not been created as a result of the tariffs.

“If demand drops because products are artificially made too expensive for consumers, nobody wins. It’s unlikely that US manufacturing will expand enough to satisfy burgeoning demand,” Whitten told DW. “While we support new US manufacturing, companies are still going to have a hard time competing with products from overseas in the years ahead.”

Made In Jacksonville

China‘s decision to cut back installed solar capacity this year by reducing subsidies has severely affected the global market for solar panels. While surging capacity had left the country struggling to build sufficient national electrical infrastructure, cuts have forced Chinese panel makers to find new buyers overseas.

In March, Florida‘s largest utility NextEra Energy agreed to buy 7 million solar panels from China‘s leading solar maker JinkoSolar Holding. Alongside that agreement, JinkoSolar is building its first US solar panel factory in Jacksonville Florida‘s most populous city.

Once the factory reaches full production after November, JinkoSolar expects it to churn out more than 1 million panels a year for the US market.

While JinkoSolar‘s new plant will boost overall US production, modern solar panel factories are increasingly automated, and profits will likely flow offshore.

Still, city officials in Jacksonville see the new Chinese investment as a major win for local businesses, particularly in services and logistics. The adjacent port expects to handle cargo shipments of raw materials and solar panel components needed for the new plant’s operations.

“In addition to creating 250 new jobs, we expect that JinkoSolar will expand its economic impact in the Jacksonville area as the demand for solar panels in the US grows,” said Tia Ford, a city spokeswoman.

 

Source: DW

The driving force behind the transformation of Miami Beach’s Sunset Harbour, Scott Robins, is taking Deco Drive by storm – his way.

Reimagined into an animated and energetic retail and restaurant hub home to eateries including NaiYaRa, Lucali, jugofresh, and Pubbelly, Robins took what was once a light industrial district and turned it into the beach’s hottest neighborhood. And now, he’s at it again. With a project to revitalize the historic Española Way – the first commercial street in Miami.

OceanDrive sat down with Robins to hear more about his plans for this renaissance of what was once a Mediterranean Spanish Village, developing Sunset Harbour, and his plans for the future opening Wynwood’s first groovy, art-focused hotel.

OceanDrive: Tell us about the renaissance of Española Way.

Scott Robins: It’s actually grown very organically. I’ve owned Española Way since 1991 and it’s been so many different places from the time I bought it to what it is now. Española Way was the original commercial street for Miami Beach, built in the 1920’s. It was the place where everyone came for bohemian experiences. But like everything in Miami Beach, it fell into disrepair. And when I bought it in 1991, it was prostitutes and drug dealers. None of these restaurants and stores were here. And really organically, over time, for me, I like to feel an area and see where it’s going and nurture the progress. And on Española Way, it’s been as long a process as I’ve ever been involved in, in real estate.

OceanDrive: Why has the process of developing this street taken such a long time?

Scott Robins: It’s a complicated street. We have hotels, restaurants, and retail stores. It’s a major pedestrian street. We’ve been building it tenant by tenant, store by store, hotel room by hotel room. And it hasn’t happened quickly. Española Way was always kind of a place where things just happen slow. So it’s been over 25 years since I’ve owned the property and just now I can honestly say that it’s gotten to the point where I think it’s beginning to reach its full potential.

Now we’ve settled into a great group of people. They’ve been here for about 10 or 15 years and we’ve sort of all grown up together on the street. Everyone recognizes how special this street is and how honored we all are to be part of this street and the history of this street.

OceanDrive: You mentioned that Española Way is a street with a storied history. Tell us about the DNA of the neighborhood and its tenants. 

Scott Robins: We have Hosteria Romana. Owner, Marco Efrati is the mayor of Española Way! He has been here the longest, he’s in the center of the street, he’s got the best food, and it’s the happiest loudest place that you could ever be. Everyone that goes there gets an incredible experience – food, entertainment, service. We built Española Way tenant by tenant and we really built it on Marco, and the kind of food, service, and atmosphere he provides.

OceanDriveWhat’s your favorite Italian dish at Hosteria Romana?

Scott Robins: The grilled seafood platter.

OceanDrive: With this notable lane’s makeover underway, what new vendors can we look forward to seeing in the near future?

Scott Robins: Vacancies on this street don’t last very long so we’re pretty much full here! We just opened a new gourmet hamburger restaurant and we’re replacing a couple of our retailers with new retailers.

OceanDrive: In addition to restructuring Española Way, you’ve been coined to develop the beach’s most sought after village, Sunset Harbour. Tell us about this experience?

Scott Robins: Part of what I do – I never force myself on any area – I try to find out what the DNA of an area is. The DNA of Española Way obviously is completely different than the DNA of Sunset Harbour. Española Way is an all-night party, it never stops. It’s mostly tourists and connects Ocean Drive, Lincoln Road, and all of the hotels. Sunset Harbour is really a neighborhood-oriented street.

Sunset Harbour, when I got there, we started to see neighborhood-serving businesses – workout places, gymnasiums, and restaurants that serve the locals rather than the tourists. Sunset Harbour’s DNA was really health, wealth, and welfare. So for me, it’s all about sensing what an area’s about. It’s about what the area wants, what the area needs, and what works best for the area.

OceanDrive: In redeveloping pockets of neighborhoods in South Florida, what are your plans for next?

Scott Robins: My favorite area at the moment is Wynwood. We’re going to develop – my partner Philip Levine and I – a very cool, hip, chic hotel that’s arts-oriented because the DNA in Wynwood is arts and culture. So we want to develop a hotel where arts-oriented people will come, be comfortable, and have a place to stay. Wynwood doesn’t have a hotel yet. We’re going to get a super cool, hip hotel chain out of Santa Monica.

OceanDrive: What would you say is your ultimate favorite area in Miami?

Scott Robins: My heart will always be in Miami Beach.

 

Source: OceanDrive

Mayfair Real Estate Advisors and Terra Group have secured an anchor tenant at Mary Street, a mixed-use development taking shape in Miami’s Coconut Grove neighborhood.

Advisory firm Kaufman Rossin agreed to occupy 64,666 square feet at the Class A project. Developers are transforming a former parking garage, with delivery slated for mid-2019. Kaufman Rossin will lease the building’s top two floors and half of the third floor starting June 2020. The firm is currently headquartered at 2699 S. Bayshore Drive, just two blocks away from Mary Street. The lease represents a 10,000-square-foot expansion, with the tenant relocating nearly 300 employees to the new location.

Co-developer Terra will also lease 13,174 square feet at the Touzet Studio-designed property, bringing Mary Street’s office component to full occupancy. Terra’s new corporate space will be on the building’s third floor and mezzanine level. Located at 3310 Mary St., the 78,000-square-foot project will feature five floors of Class A office space, ground-floor retail space and a publicly accessible, 340-space parking garage.

Pent-Up Demand

Upon delivery, Mary Street will mark the first completion of Class A office space in Coconut Grove’s business district in more than two decades. According to a JLL report, vacancy in Coconut Grove is 1.7 percent, the lowest rate in Miami Dade County’s submarkets. Amenities at Mary Street will include 24-hour security, covered drop-off and valet areas, electric car charging stations, bicycle stations and storage. Jaguar Therapeutic, OXXO Cleaners, Elia restaurant, Workout Spot and a private dentistry practice are among the signed retail tenants.

Tom Capocefalo, senior managing director with Savills Studley, represented Kaufman Rossin, while Chris Dekker, vice president with Mayfair Real Estate Advisors, worked on behalf of the development team.

“The move to this expanded, innovative space represents new beginnings for Kaufman Rossin while keeping us true to our roots in Coconut Grove,” said Blain Heckaman, chief executive officer of Kaufman Rossin, in prepared remarks.

“Our team launched Mary Street to complete the vision of a true live-work-play environment in Coconut Grove,” added David Martin, president & co-founder of Terra.

 

Source: Commercial Property Executive

A developer is planning to rebuild the Coconut Grove Metrorail station into a self-powered apartment and retail complex.

Grove Central will include a 330-unit apartment tower, along with retail space, parking and a bus station, according to the Miami Herald. Total cost is expected to be $200 million.

Solar panels are planned to cover the buildings, producing two megawatts of power. Underneath, massive batteries that are the size of six shipping containers will store 20-megawatts per hour of electricity.

Air condition for the building would come from a geothermal system using cold water pumped from underground. Groundwater and rainwater will also be used to provide cooling mist and for landscape irrigation.

Enough power could be generated and stored to make the building self-powered, while also powering Metrorail as it departs the station, planners say. The solar array and battery is known as an urban microgrid, and is the first of its kind in Florida.

A waste-to-energy plant that would convert sewage into power, compost and water is also in negotiations.

The developers are awaiting final approval from county transportation officials, with completion expected in 2021. Five other Metrorail stations, as well as 10.7-acres of land next to Miami Central Station by the airport, are now in planning or negotiations for similar sustainable projects.

Terra Group and Grass River Property are the developers of Grove Central, with Touzet Studio the architect. The solar project is also a pilot program for Florida Power & Light.

 

Source: The Next Miami

Those looking for new digs in South Florida would be wise to check out one of these areas.

Here’s where luxury home buyers are parking their money.

Coconut Grove

Coconut Grove is on the tip of many Miami real estate experts’ tongues, all of whom cite a sort of rebirth in an already prestigious area.

“The city is doing a lot to revamp the area in terms of parks and restaurants, and it has more of a community feel,” says Chad Carroll of the Carroll Group at Douglas Elliman.

One reason for that is an influx of office space, which has helped make the “live-work-play” lifestyle a possibility in Coconut Grove, says Karen Elmir, president of the Elmir Group with Cervera Real Estate. New stores have also come in, and CocoWalk announced in the spring that it would be adding an open-air plaza as well as new stores and restaurants to the long-established shopping and dining center. Plus, there are plenty of new places to call home.

“There are many new high-end buildings with top-of-the-line amenities,” says Ms. Elmir, who specializes in sales in the area and has shown homes there to celebrities like models Elle Macpherson and Hannah Jeter and basketball player Hassan Whiteside.

Ms. Elmir says prices have gone up in recent years, citing sales at the Bjarke Ingels–designed Grove at Grand Bay. In 2012, she was selling residences at about $800 a square foot. Now, they’re more like $1,100 to $1,200 per square foot, she says.

“It’s one of the hottest areas in all of Miami,” says Daniel de la Vega, president of ONE Sotheby’s International Realty.

He is handling sales at the not-yet-opened Fairchild Coconut Grove, where 26 luxury condominiums range from $1.4 million to $4.6 million.

East Edgewater

East Edgewater is also making waves.

“It’s minutes away from the new Design District,” Ms. Elmir says. “It’s minutes away from Miami Beach.”

Not that one would necessarily want to leave. The area is home to several new retail options—think high-end shops and gourmet restaurant—and has sweeping views of Biscayne Bay.

“Beyond emerging, it’s developing,” says Beth Butler, president of Florida Compass. “There’s been more retail and residential action.…It’s a hot neighborhood.”

She says the condo market is especially strong. The neighborhood has single-family homes lining the side streets, as well. New residential developments include Aria on the Bay, in which Grammy Award–winning producer Timbaland bought a home. A three-story penthouse is for sale for just under $13 million.

There’s also the Biscayne Beach Residences, where Ms. Elmir is showing a $10.5 million penthouse. Paraiso, a project from Related Cos., is bringing 1,400 new condos in four towers, as well as retail options, to service the new spike in population. A new beach club and restaurant are part of the mix.

Downtown Miami

Walkability is one of the main draws of Downtown Miami, according to Jill Eber of the Miami Beach–based real estate team The Jills.

“Everything is superclose,” Jill Eber says. “It’s like a city within a city.…It’s like a little New York there.” That includes the American Airlines Arena, home to the Miami Heat basketball team, cultural centers, and plenty of shops and restaurants.

Ms. Eber says the number of baby carriages in the neighborhood has increased in recent years.

The Brightline train is now connecting passengers from downtown to West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale, and developers are looking to the area as another “live-work-play” location.

“Downtown shares its southern border with Brickell,” Ms. Eber says. “The whole area is seeing a lot of interest. Before, it was just a bunch of parking lots.”

The Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science, which opened in 2017, and the Perez Art Museum Miami, which features modern work, are highlights of the area.

“A renewed sense of community has spurred new events and projects,” Ms. Butler says. “One new project is Canvas, a 37-story tower offering 513 fully finished apartments.”

 

Source: Mansion Global

Okan Tower is one step closer to beginning construction.

On September 1, contractors filed a dry run permit to begin building a 70-story tower, city records show.

Next week, a phased Class II foundation permit will be filed, along with a master building permit, a consultant working for the developer said.

The filing last week included:

  • 500 sheets for review by city officials
  • $457,707.60 upfront permit fee
  • $163,466,625 total cost of construction
  • 318,090 square feet of hotel, with 294 rooms on 19 floors
  • 512,080 square feet of condo, with 398 rooms on 33 floors
  • 66,920 square feet of office, on 4 floors
  • 37,005 square feet of retail on 1 floor
  • 934,095 total square feet to be built

The hotel will be known as the Hilton Bayfront.

Okan representatives previously told The Next Miami that the tower will top of at 890 feet.

 

Source: The Next Miami