Magic Johnsons Team Heads To City Hall For Building Permit
Written by Deserae del Campo on April 27, 2006
By Deserae del Campo
Basketball legend Earvin "Magic" Johnson’s effort to funnel money into East Little Havana via the $171 million Intown Village condo development is to go before Miami city commission April 27 in quest of a major use special building permit.
Intown Village is to be a two-tower, 202-foot-tall, 19-story development with 395 condos, 33,000 square feet of retail and 34,000 square feet of additional commercial space.
It’s to rise at 45 SW Eighth Ave., 715, 717, 727 and 735 SW First St. and 702 and 720 W. Flagler St.
"I think it’s a positive project," said Pablo Canton, neighborhood enhancement team administrator for East Little Havana. "From what I have seen this is a very nice project. We need more housing like this in the area. I have not heard any negative feedback on this project."
Developers of Intown Village are Miami-based mFm Construction along with equity partner the Canyon-Johnson Urban Fund.
The urban fund was created after Mr. Johnson and his investment partners Canyon Capital Reality Advisors formed the company in 2001.
Principals of mFm Construction are Mauricio Martinez and Jose Malabet.
Intown Village is also asking the city commission for a floor area ratio bonus from 1.75 to 2.0, which would increase the floor space available within the towers to twice the size of the parcel of land.
"This will allow more workable and livable units," said Simon Ferro, attorney representing developers.
Condos are to range from $200,000 to $400,000.
In January, Miami’s zoning board approved the request to increase the floor area ratio with a 5-3 vote. One month later, the planning department and planning advisory board approved the building permit request by a 4-1 vote.
Mr. Johnson played 13 years for the Los Angeles Lakers as the tallest point guard in league history, 6 feet, 9 inches. He retired in 1991.