Miami trading realty teams for new Florida Marlins ballpark garages
By Jacquelyn Weiner
Miami is trading players in the game of leasing retail space at its Marlins stadium garages.
Following an eight-day competitive bid, Miami commissioners are to vote today (7/28) on awarding Terranova Corp. a contract to handle retail leasing and management of the six slots totaling 53,281 square feet available in three of the four stadium garages. The contract would be a one year, with four one-year renewal options.
Compensation would include $5,000 monthly for the first six months of leasing, a $10,000 initial marketing budget and 6% commission on leases on up to ten years of the rental term.
Before this, real estate firm NAI Miami had been promoting the sites for months for the Miami Parking Authority.
Jeremy Larkin, NAI Miami president, said in an interview Monday that the firm had letters of interest for "almost 60%" of available space, and that there was "substantial interest from a core group of retailers and restaurants."
However, NAI never had the power to sign deals.
Miami committed to building parking under a stadium-construction agreement with the Marlins and Miami-Dade County. The quasi-independent Miami Parking Authority must run it, but either can oversee the garage retail.
Thus an agreement is needed outlining retail-space responsibilities. It was continuously delayed but is to be voted on today.
Meanwhile, concerned with the shrinking timeline, the parking authority had given NAI the go-ahead to peddle the space. Yet after seeing NAI's prospects, Miami opted to consider other firms and handle leasing itself.
"My goal is to maximize our revenues and to have quality retail in there," Commissioner Frank Carollo said at the most recent commission meeting.
Asked if Terranova plans to utilize NAI's work to date, spokeswoman Kelliann McDonald said the firm wouldn't comment until commissioners approve the leasing contract.
Only Terranova and NAI responded to the city's request for letters of interest to lease retail at the garages.
Mr. Carollo said in an interview that other firms were interested but couldn't pull together a proposal within the allowed time.
Respondents had eight days to submit an up-to-20-page proposal with 14 requirements, according to the request for letters of interest, including references, a "complete list of clients" for which the company performed similar services, a description of "overall approach and methodology" and current or pending litigation.
Other open solicitations on the city's website allow a month or more to respond.
Mr. Carollo said the process was expedited to ensure commission approval now, as the commission won't meet again until September.
In addition, negotiating retail leases can take well over a year, and opening day for 2012 Marlins baseball is less than nine months away.
Both bids were ranked by a selection committee of Alice Bravo, Miami's chief of infrastructure; Madeline Valdes, city director of public facilities; Miami-Dade County Commissioner Bruno Barreiro; Adrian Songer with the Miami-Dade County Aviation Department, and Tony Fraga, principal at Fraga Capital Partners.
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