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Front Page » Real Estate » Related’s 3-tower Brickell complex

Related’s 3-tower Brickell complex

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Written by on December 3, 2014

Related’s 3-tower Brickell complex

A plan to build three towers in the heart of downtown Miami on the river could mean the opening of a prime section of the growing riverwalk and key connection to the Miami Circle.

This is a major selling point advanced by the developer, The Related Group, as it garnered an affirmative recommendation from the city’s Urban Development Review Board.

With its location right on Brickell Avenue and its northern boundary the bank of the Miami River, one could argue there’s no downtown site with a higher profile.

Given the name One Brickell, Related CEO Jorge Perez said the project is the most important development in the “urban core.”

“This is a very prominent site,” said board member Dean Lewis.

Iris Escarra, an attorney representing the developer, said: “This is the last piece of the puzzle on Brickell Avenue.”

The existing parking garage that extends to the river’s edge will be removed as part of the phased development of the site, she said.

“This is an opportunity to complete the riverwalk under the bridge and to the [Miami] Circle,” said Ms. Escarra.

Discovered in 1998, the Miami Circle is considered a significant archaeological site at the mouth of the river. Excavations uncovered evidence of a prehistoric structure of the Tequesta, one of the first Native North American groups in the area.

Miami Circle was designated a National Historic Landmark by the US Department of the Interior in 2009. A park is maintained as part of the preservation of the circle.

“It affords a unique opportunity to link the riverwalk,” said Ms. Escarra for One Brickell, noting that Mr. Perez has plans to fill the public walkway with art displays.

The goal is to create and active space, she said, “really activate the area from Miami Circle to west of Brickell.”

The riverwalk is a public pathway promoted by the Miami River Commission on both sides of the river.

Existing at the site is a 10-story office building and parking garage. The building’s ground level is home to Capital Grille.

The overall project is to include three new towers, offering hotel and residential units, a centrally located podium atop a new parking structure, about 25,000 square feet of retail uses, and 40,000 square feet of office floor space.

Bernardo Fort-Brescia, founding principal of the architectural firm Arquitectonica, went through a presentation of site plans and renderings for One Brickell.

The three-building complex will form a courtyard, and the towers will have ground floor retail. Restaurants are also planned, as are two swimming pools. Loading is to be in the lower level of the central area.

The tower closest to Brickell, to be constructed in the final phase, is to be home to a five-star hotel with about 250 rooms and apartments on the upper floors.

The hotel lobby will be on the ground floor to activate the street, said Mr. Fort-Brescia, and planned restaurants too.

In addition, the entire frontage along the river is to be lined with “significant restaurants,” he said. By opening up the property along the river, the developer anticipates plenty of activity – “biking, jogging, parents with strollers” – said Mr. Fort-Brescia.

Review board member Fidel Perez had high praise for the development.

“This is a great project for Miami… an icon for the mouth of the river,” said Mr. Perez.

Carlos Rosso also spoke on behalf of The Related Group.

One Brickell will be built in two phases, he said. The two towers furthest from Brickell Avenue will be constructed first and at the same time, beginning in 2015, he said.

Of the residential back towers, one will be condo and one rental, he said.

The third tower will come in phase two. There is no timeline, he said, saying it “depends on the market.” Offices in the existing 10-story building have seven-year leases.

The final tower will probably be the tallest on Brickell and serve as a signature piece on the river, said Mr. Rosso.

Plans for One Brickell are expected to be reviewed in January by the Miami River Commission.

7 Responses to Related’s 3-tower Brickell complex

  1. DC Copeland

    December 3, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    “This is a great project for Miami… an icon for the mouth of the river,” said Mr. Perez. Just because it is on the mouth of the Miami River doesn’t mean it is or will be iconic. Hopefully when the plans are released in January it will be iconic, something that is unfortunately lacking in Miami architecture. Hopefully the architects will take it beyond “iconic” all the way to “destination architecture.”

    • marc

      December 3, 2014 at 5:28 pm

      IT isn’t DC. The renders are available online.

  2. Ben Grimm

    December 4, 2014 at 11:12 am

    I have yet to see an iconic building in Brickell. None are memorable designs. There is a architectural style in there it’s just not something that inspires the zeitgeist.

    This development amidst so much empty residential space is being spurred by real estate prospector money. The city is allowing it without considering the added traffic that will not be alleviated by transit or other measures. It’s something that would never happen in real metropolitan cities.

    At some point we need to consider towers that are not 10 floors of parking. They will fill up because people will realize there’s no need for a car in a built-up urban environment.

  3. DC Copeland

    December 4, 2014 at 2:35 pm

    Marc, thanks for the heads-up re the renderings. The design is underwhelming. It looks like something a lazy high school architecture student might try to foist on an unsuspecting teacher with an explanation that the 4×4 pressure treated 2′ tall model with a notch cut out at the top was “cutting edge.” Maybe it was 50-years ago, but now its popping up everywhere. Boring and nothing to write home to mom about. What ever happened to Arquitectonica? It had such potential. It appears it has lost its visionary, rule-breaking mojo. Perhaps the firm needs an intervention to find it again.

  4. cec

    December 5, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    WITH REGARD TO RELATED’S THREE TOWER BRICKELL COMPLEX BEING DESIGNED BY ARCHITECTONICA, MAY I OFFER THE FOLLOWING COMMENTS: MR. PEREZ HAS PROBABLE DONE, AND IS STILL IN THE PROCESS OF DOING, MORE TO PUT MIAMI ON THE MAP THAN ANY INDIVIDUAL IN THE CITY’S HISTORY. ARCHITECTONICA IS UNQUESTIONABLY ONE OF THE FOREMOST ARCHITECTUAL FIRMS IN THE WORLD. THERE ARE FEW INDIVIDUALS WITH THE MENTAL CAPACITY TO JUDGE THE QUALIFICATIONS OF EITHER MR. PEREZ OR MR.FORT-BRESCIA. IF ANYONE THINKS THEY ARE MORE CAPABLE THAN THESE TWO GENTLEMEN, PROVE IT, DO SOMETHING. PEOPLE WHO LIMIT THEMSELVES TO DISPARAGING COMMENTS TOWARD OTHERS REMINE ME OF TWO OLD ADAGES. ONE ATTRIBUTED TO THE CHINESE: “IT IS BETTER TO BE SILENT AND BE THOUGHT A FOOL, THAN SPEAK AND REMOUVE ALL DOUBT”. THE OTHER OF UNKOWN ORIGIN: ” A HEAD IS LIKE A WAGON, IT RATTLES MOST, WHEN EMPTY”.

    • Dan

      December 12, 2014 at 7:52 pm

      cec, (one of the those who scream with all caps to make a point not worth making) you talk mental capacity but can’t spell at all … “remine me” LOL. You definitely remouved (sic) all doubt that your comments matter. As for “ARCHITECTONICA” which isn’t even how they spell their name …. you think they’ve probable (sic) put Miami on the map, but what map do we want to be on … lots of cookie cutter curvy balcony high-rises, who cares. See the world and learn to celebrate architecture that matters, like in Chicago. In Miami we throw up more high-rises, but unless you are a realtor and your commission check has been cashed, it’s not making things better. Most ridiculous is your comment that we can’t … or perhaps dare not … judge the qualifications of these Gods of yours …. we can, should, and do judge, and the verdict seems to be growing that they aren’t stepping up anymore, they’ve gotten lazy with uninteresting developments that are an obvious grab to just go after the money …. good for them, they are businessmen riding their moment, but not good for Miami.

      • Ben Grimm

        February 1, 2015 at 12:33 am

        Preach!

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