Separate projects plan 1,000 downtown residences, plus retail
By Paola Iuspa
Continuing moves to attract residents to live near where they work, City of Miami commissioners approved conceptual plans for two mixed-use projects that together will add more than 1,000 units to the Brickell business district.
Park Place at Brickell, planned for the 1400 block of Brickell Avenue and Beacon at Brickell Village, at 30 SE Eighth St. attracted no opposition at last week's city commission meeting and both won approval within five minutes.
Alan Ojeda, a principal with Park Place at Brickell, did not say when the group plans to go back to the city for a building permit to start construction. He said he would be willing to discuss the project publicly in three months.
The first phase of Mr. Ojeda's rental complex is planned to have 367 residences plus about 17,000 square feet of commercial space on the ground floor and 796 parking spaces. Phase two calls for a 406-unit building with about 20,000 square feet of retail space and 604 parking spaces.
The project, on 5 acres, abuts Brickell Avenue on the east, South Miami Avenue on the west and Southeast 15th Road on the south. Rents would range from $1,100 to $2,000 monthly. The development is expected to generate $3.3 million annually in tax revenue to local governments, according to city documents.
Both towers at Park Place, designed by Bermello Ajamil & Partners, would have 40 stories and two eight-story parking garages.
The focal point of the $190 million project is a planned pedestrian plaza at the intersection of Southeast 15th Road and South Miami.
A water wall extending 110 feet along the perimeter would serve as a background for seating, said Adrienne Pardo, attorney with Greenberg Traurig, which is representing the developer.
The second project, Beacon at Brickell Village, is designed to have a dramatic beacon on top of a 36-story tower. The mixed-use project calls for 251 residential units, 2,650 square feet of office space and 2,715 square feet for retail and restaurants on the ground floor. The building would also have a 364-space parking garage.
Renzo Renzi of Renzi Development said he hopes to start construction of the $40 million project in February and complete it in 18 months.
The land is owned by Millennium Penthouse Inc. Mr. Renzi, who has a contract on the acreage, said he hopes to close on the deal early next year.
He said if the project becomes rental residences, costs would start at $1,500 a month for one-bedroom apartments. If it becomes a condominium, unit prices would start at $160,000.
The project, designed by Behar Font & Partners, would generate about $394,556 annually in tax revenues to local governments, according to city documents.
A study commissioned earlier this year by the City of Miami's Downtown Development Authority estimated a need for 5,421 more residences by 2005 in the downtown and Brickell area.
A recent survey by real estate firm Grubb & Ellis showed the need for apartment developments in the area is high and demand outpaces supply. During economic slowdowns, Grubb & Ellis said, rental properties are more popular because people are hesitant to spend their savings to buy a home.