Coral Way shopping center to be rebuilt
By Marilyn Bowden
With demolition permits in hand, the owners of Miracle Center on Coral Way say they plan to bring down the old and ring in the new as soon as the new year is under way.
"It will get worse before it gets better," said Michael Mouriz, principal at Keystone Homes, part of a joint venture on an extensive upgrade with Talisman Cos., which has rehabilitated a number of distressed malls, including the former Cutler Ridge Mall, now Southland Mall, and Midway Mall.
"Once we get started, there will be no stopping until we're through," Mr. Mouriz said. "We will begin with the west side first."
The mall, at 3301 Miracle Mile in Miami, just outside Coral Gables, will be renamed Miracle Marketplace, he said. The 18-month redesign is to open the mall to the street with glass exteriors.
The only existing tenant, Bally Total Fitness, is to expand from 28,000 square feet to 50,000, said James Schlesinger of Talisman. He said Marshalls, Bed Bath & Beyond, Office Max, Ulta, Designer Shoes Warehouse, Payless Shoes, PetsMart and Sweet Tomatoes restaurant are among incoming tenants.
Miracle Center, designed by Arquitectonica International, opened in 1989 with tenants that included TGI Fridays, Fuddruckers, General Cinema, Scandinavian Health Spa, The Limited, Spec's Records & Tapes and Sunglass Hut.
Plans to add a nine-story rental apartment tower never materialized. Instead, eight years later, the foundering mall was sold and reopened as Paseos Mall. The concept - a Spanish Colonial center with pushcarts, kiosks and specialty stores - never caught on.
In 2001, another developer bought the site with the intent of converting it to office space for high-tech companies, but the high-tech market soon collapsed.
The current owners bought the mall for $15 million last year.