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Front Page » FYI Miami » Fyi Miami

Fyi Miami

Written by on January 17, 2002

ITEM DELAY: Miami commissioners delayed discussion of a tax exemption program for developers and owners building or expanding businesses in some of Miami’s underdeveloped areas. City Manager Carlos Gimenez said commissioners are expected to act on the measure within a month after the city attorney works on the language.

GLOBAL CONCERN: Global Spectrum, a Philadelphia firm that manages public facilities, was picked to run the University of Miami’s Ryder Center. The $48 million multi-purpose arena is set to open this year to be home to the UM men’s and women’s basketball teams. The 7,000-seat venue will also be used for concerts and other sports events.

LISTEN TO ME: An item on Miami-Dade County’s legislative agenda asking county legislators to oppose changes to the county’s charter and any other efforts "that similarly weaken the county’s authority" has raised Rep. Carlos Lacasa’s eyebrows. Chair of the appropriations committee, Rep. Lacasa said he was put off by the county’s flat-out rejection of his strong mayor plan. "It makes me mad to get the list of priorities and take it seriously when they get my priority and dismiss it as an infringement on their turf. It doesn’t foster the spirit of cooperation. They should give me the courtesy they’re asking me to give them. Some won’t even give me an appointment. It’s a very serious tactical error."

HOUSTON LINK: Commercebank announced it has opened an office in Houston. An affiliate of Venezuela’s Banco Mercantil, Coral Gables-based Commercebank conducted a "significant amount of groundwork over the past year" in Houston, said President Millar Wilson. "Our goal," he said, "is to increase our share of the trade finance market in the oil services industry."

GABLES BOUND: Atlantic Security Bank, the private banking and asset management arm of Banco de Credito del Peru Group, announced it will relocate from the penthouse floor at 801 Brickell Ave. to 12,500 square feet in Alhambra Towers, 121 Alhambra Plaza, Coral Gables, very early next year. The projected opening date in new quarters for the bank is Jan. 1, 2003. Construction of the building, said Allen Morris leasing agents Jorge L. Morales and Dale I. Graham, who jointly handled the Atlantic Security lease, is entering its final stage.

TERREMARK PACT: Miami-Dade Community College and Terremark Worldwide, an Internet connection, infrastructure and services firm, are entering into a cooperative agreement to train students in information technology. The college is to provide IT training at the Emerging Technologies Center of the Americas, to be operating by June. Terremark is to help design curriculum, assist in the development of new program and offer internship opportunities.

MORE TERREMARK: Latin American Nautilus USA signed a contract to house its primary North American Point of Presence at the Network Access Point of the Americas, owned and operated by Terremark Worldwide. Nautilus is one of the world’s major regional broadband telecommunication providers.

AWARDS FOR NON-PROFITS: The Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce is accepting applications for its NOVO award for not-for-profit innovative excellence, given to programs within not-for-profit groups. Cash awards of $1,000 will be presented to one organization with a budget of less than $1 million and one at more than $1 million at a March 6 luncheon. Details: (305) 577-5460 or email

WEBSITES LAUNCH: The Miami-Dade Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is holding a launch for two websites at 7 p.m. Friday, at the Savoy Hotel, 455 Ocean Drive. and went online at the beginning of the month. "The website is designed to meet the needs of the local gay and lesbian businessperson as well as providing a valuable resource for leisure and business travelers to the Greater Miami area who are interested in what the local gay community has to offer," said David Treece, chamber president.

BANK SOLD: Southern Security Bank has paid $4.5 million cash and more than 1 million shares of holding company stock for the assets and liabilities of Miami-based PanAmerican Bank. The purchase, which brings Southern Security Bank’s assets to $66 million, includes the PanAmerican name. "The addition of PanAmerican significantly increases our presence in Miami-Dade County," said Southern Security President & CEO Hugo Castro. "It also provides us a name with a long history in South Florida."

UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT: Washington, DC-based Urban Investment Advisors acquired the assets of Starwood Urban Investments last week, replacing Starwood as exclusive investment manager and advisor for Starwood Urban Group and its portfolio around the nation. The purchase gives UIA, a real estate advisory investment management firm headed by the former president of Starwood Urban Investments, management of Starwood’s substantial holdings in Lincoln Road’s shopping district in Miami Beach and on Miracle Mile in Coral Gables.

ART DECO WEEKEND: Organizers with the Miami Design Preservation League said they expect more than 400,000 people to visit the district Jan. 18-20 along Ocean Drive and adjoining areas in Miami Beach. The festival is being held this year under the banner "25 Years of Sterling Preservation." Details: (305) 672-2014 or

BIG APPLE APPEAL: The Greater Miami Jewish Federation has invited Rudy Giuliani, former mayor of New York City, to serve as keynote speaker to open the United Jewish Appeal Campaign. Cornerstone Event ceremonies start at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 10 in the Fontainebleau Hilton Resort, 4441 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. Cost is $1,000. Details: (305) 576-4000.

M-DCC DEGREE: Miami-Dade Community College this week proposed to members of the Florida Council for Education Policy & Improvement in Tallahassee offering a four-year degree leading to bachelor’s degree in education. The school now awards only two-year associate’s degrees. The council is to make a recommendation on the matter next month to the Florida Board of Education.

EMERGENCY PLAN: The Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, Miami-Dade Office of Emergency Management & United Way of Miami-Dade are co-sponsoring a seminar, "Emergency Plans: They’re Not Just for Hurricanes Anymore," from 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Jan. 30 in the Miami-Dade County Emergency Operations Center, 9300 NW 41st St. A box lunch & beverage will be served. Reservations are required. Cost is $20. Details: (305) 350-7700.

RIVER NOTICE: The Miami Greenways Subcommittee is holding a public meeting at 9 a.m. Jan. 24 in the Library Map Room at the UM Rosenstiel School, 4600 Rickenbacker Causeway. The agenda includes a discussion of the Miami River Commission’s Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Recreational Trails Program grant application to fund the Miami River Greenway adjacent to the 2,000-year-old "Miami Circle"

COLLECTING MUSEUM-STYLE: A seminar, "How & Why to Build a Collection" is being held at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 24 at in the Jewish Museum Jewish Museum of Florida, 301 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. Organizers said two prominent collectors from South Florida would speak about collecting. The session is suitable for collectors of art, coins, antiques, historical documents and artifacts and other memorabilia. Cost is $5; free to members. Details: (305) 672-5044, ext. 11.

MIAMI ANALYSTS: The Miami Society of Financial Analysts is offering a talk on "Fixed Income Strategies for 2002" at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 24 in the JW Marriott, 1111 Brickell Ave. Mike Ryan with UBS Paine Webber is scheduled speaker. The session is being co-sponsored by the Miami Bond Club. Cost is $45; $35 for members & $20 for students. Details: (305) 829-8882.

GABLES NOTES: The Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce is holding its monthly membership meeting at 7:30 a.m. today (1/17) in the Country Club Ballroom, Biltmore Hotel, 1200 Anastasia Ave., Coral Gables. Ron Magill, Metrozoo communications manager, is scheduled to speak. The chamber meanwhile is seeking nominations for its Women’s Business Network awards by noon Feb. 8 from new quarters at Suite 650, 2333 Ponce de Leon Blvd. The winner will be announced at the chamber’s March 21 Good Morning Coral Gables Breakfast. Details: (305) 446-1657.

PAVARINI POST: Pavarini Construction Co., 1800 Eller Drive, Fort Lauderdale, named Gene McGovern CEO for Miami operations amid expansion plans that include setting up operations somewhere in North Miami. The company now has an interiors division on Brickell Key. Mr. McGovern, who in the past managed the restoration of the Statue of Liberty and construction projects for France’s Euro Disney, founded Lehrer McGovern in 1979 and became chairman of parent Bovis Construction in 1988. He founded GMO International in 1994. Pavarini projects in Miami include One Biscayne Tower and Three Tequesta Point for Swire Properties.

TECHNOLOGY LINKS: Global links of Miami’s technology world is the focus of a breakfast session of Miami Today’s International Roundtable at 7:30 a.m. Jan. 25 in the Miami City Club, 55th floor, 200 S Biscayne Blvd. Panelists for the session, co-sponsored by Shorenstein Realty Services, are Brian K. Goodkind, executive vice president and COO of Terremark Worldwide Inc.; M. Lewis Temares, University of Miami vice president for information technology and dean of engineering; Thomas Quarles, of counsel to the law firm Stearns Weaver Miller Weissler Alhadeff & Sitterson, and Seth Gordon, chairman of the Internet and e-commerce group for the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce and chairman of GDB & Partners. Reservations required. Details: Techy Fernandez, (305) 358-2663.

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