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Front Page » FYI Miami » Fyi Miami

Fyi Miami

Written by on April 22, 2004


Miami is a weekly feature of Miami Today, keeping readers ahead

of the news. Here are highlights from the most current edition.

ROLL CALL: Korn/Ferry International, a recruiting firm hired to find a replacement for Superintendent Merrett Stierheim, gave the Miami-Dade County Public School Board the names of four candidates Tuesday. Up for the job are Rudolph Crew, former New York City public schools chancellor; Pedro Garcia, metropolitan Nashville public schools director; John Murphy, former Charlotte, NC, superintendent; and Eric Smith, Anne Arundel County, MD, superintendent. All have teaching experience and each has been a superintendent for more than a decade. Mr. Stierheim is to leave the post in June. He has been superintendent since October 2001.

HEADED NORTH: Gov. Jeb Bush and state economic development arm Enterprise Florida are to lead a trade mission to Montreal and Ontario July 26-30. The aim is to help Florida businesses benefit from 3.5% growth expected this year in Canada’s economy. Canada imported $2.4 billion in goods from Florida last year, trading heavily in pharmaceuticals, information technology, telecommunications, agricultural equipment and other products. According to the governor’s office, trade with Canada generates about 29,100 jobs for Floridians. Details: (305) 569-2650.

METMOVE IN MIAMI: Developers of Metropolitan Miami need to move one of the project’s residential towers about 8 feet to the south. The shift is necessary "to accommodate the city’s desire to realign Southeast Third Street," according to city documents. City commissioners are to consider the change at a planning and zoning hearing today (4/22). MDM Development Group’s multiphase mix of 1,500 condos, office and retail space and a movie theater is to rise across 6 acres along Biscayne Boulevard Way just east of the Brickell bridge.

METMONEY: City documents estimate cost of the Metropolitan Miami project at $688 million. As many as 915 workers may be necessary for construction and, after completion, about 470 jobs are expected to be added. The city may reap about $9.9 million annually from the downtown development.

DEVELOPMENT ISSUE DELAYED: Bay Harbor Islands’ town council withdrew a vote Monday on a proposed Gateway Zoning District. Instead, the pending height-regulation issue that could affect a dozen parcels on East Island where Kane Concourse enters the community is to return May 10 after town officials meet with property owners, said J.C. Jimenez, assistant to the town manager.

NOT BLUFFING ON BAN: A proposed 90-day moratorium on construction along Southwest 27th Avenue from Coral Way to US 1 is scheduled for debate today (4/22) by Miami city commissioners in a meeting starting at 4:30 p.m. at City Hall. Development restrictions are suggested to block further high-rise projects along a busy corridor in Miami’s Silver Bluff neighborhood and were sparked by a 14-story development called Catalonia, slated to rise next to single-family homes.

WE MEAN IT: Final reading of a proposed 90-day moratorium on new buildings in excess of 40 feet in Miami’s Upper Eastside is scheduled for city commissioners at 4 p.m. today. A separate ban will go into effect May 8 blocking applications for commercial buildings taller than 85 feet and residential buildings taller than 95 for the same area along Biscayne Boulevard. New building guidelines for the Upper Eastside are being crafted.

TAKE YOUR PICK: Developers of Kubik at Morningside are to pitch two versions of a two-building project to Miami commissioners at a hearing set for 3 p.m. today (4/22) at City Hall. The $180 million project planned for a 3.72-acre triangular patch between Northeast 56th and 58th streets along Biscayne Boulevard is one of a few in the pipeline not affected by a moratorium in that area. Version A has 293 residential units, 41,745 square feet of restaurant and retail space and 422 parking spots. Version B has the same number of units but only 33,046 square feet of restaurant and retail and 362 parking spaces. The project is a partnership among Kubik LLC, Biscayne Premier Investment Inc. and Mark’s Classics Corp.

NEW TRUST: The Office of Financial Regulation granted a trust-company charter to Coral Gables Trust Co. after the firm announced this week that it had raised $4 million from investors and shareholders. The company is a subsidiary of Coral Gables Financial Corp.

LAST CALL: Friday is the deadline for nominating persons who have served the community for United Way of Miami-Dade honors – the Dorothy Shula Award for Outstanding Volunteerism, the Essie Silva Community Builder Award, the Outstanding Youth Award and the Msgr. Walsh Outstanding Human Service Professional Award. Nominees aren’t required to worked in the United Way system, but elected officials are barred. Details: (305) 646-7115 or

MUSEUM TRANSACTION: The Historical Museum of Southern Florida plans to name William Holly chairman of its board of directors. He is to take over officially today (4/22). He said one of his top priorities during his two-year term will be Miami-Dade County’s proposed acquisition of the historic Freedom Tower as museum headquarters. Mr. Holly has volunteered at the museum since 1990 and is treasurer of the board of trustees, which he has served on for about five years. He is president and founder of Holly Real Estate Inc. in Coral Gables.

INTERNATIONAL ARRIVAL: The International Association of Latin American Air Transport has moved its corporate headquarters here from Bogot·, Colombia, where it operated for 20 years. "More and more Latin American corporations base their head offices here in Miami. We want to take advantage of those synergies," Alex de Gunten, association executive director, said Tuesday. Four employees will work out of offices at 703 Waterford Way, Suite 630, he said. The non-profit group founded in 1980 has 18 airlines in its fleet and representatives in Bogot·; Santiago, Chile; and Buenos Aires.

INCOMING: The AITAL Latin American Airline Leaders Forum will have a conference at Hotel InterContinental Miami Nov. 17-19. According to Mr. De Gunten, most of the CEOs and top officials of its 18 members will offer presentations. "It helps Miami as a hub in terms of aviation," he said. Details: (786) 388-0222 or

RETURN TRIP: Sonesta Hotel & Suites, Coconut Grove, named George Cozonis general manager to oversee daily operations. He moves from a similar post at Omni Houston Hotel. He has been general manager at Omni Colonnade in Coral Gables and Omni at Independence Park in Philadelphia. He was born in Athens, Greece, and graduated from Cornell University.

HONORING GRANT PROGRAM: College Assistance Program Inc., which offers educational grants to low-income students, plans to mark its 25th anniversary Tuesday with a community leaders luncheon. State Attorney Katherine Fernandez-Rundle will be keynote speaker for the event, which will honor founder Holmes Braddock and the program’s other creators. The luncheon is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at Radisson Hotel, 1601 Biscayne Blvd.

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