Smart Car May Come With Every Condo
By Catherine Lackner
Building on the concept of the new urbanism, Miami developer Santiago Vanegas is planning a condo building that not only satisfies owners’ need for shelter, but also for transportation.
"It will be an intelligent building involving Smart Cars," said Mr. Vanegas, a principal in Habitat Development LLC. The ROA Group and Santianto Cordovez are also partners in the project. "We spoke with Mercedes and they looked like they were interested," Mr. Vanegas said.
The as-yet-unnamed building will rise at 1775 SW Third Ave. in West Brickell in about a year, Mr. Vanegas said. The developers have applied for a domain name for the project, which will comprise about 190 units and will be LEED Gold certified, he added.
In addition to giving buyers an option of having a Smart Car wrapped into their purchase, the developers will include iPods, innovative appliances and "smart" gadgets that control the heating, cooling and electrical systems, he said.
The building will target local workers in the Brickell office district, the Mary Brickell Village retail complex and in Swire’s massive Brickell Citycentre development, he said.
Even if owners decide against getting a Smart Car, the property is within walking distance of a Publix supermarket, three blocks from Metrorail and across from a City of Miami trolley station, Mr. Vanegas said.
By incorporating parking for Smart Cars, the developers hope to limit the parking they will be required to provide.
"That is not in the code right now, but we are talking to the city about it," he said. "We will propose to the city 20 parking spaces of normal size, which will fit 40 Smart Cars. Not all of the people will have the cars."
If that doesn’t work, the developers will consider installing a lift system to be able to stack cars vertically. They also might incorporate a station for car sharing, allowing a franchise like Zipcar or Car2Go to operate there, Mr. Vanegas said.
"The idea is that we can include one car in the sales price of $200,000 to $250,000, install intelligent fixtures and give them a smart kitchen," Mr. Vanegas said. "The Smart Car comes in five colors, and the kitchen counters will be offered in those five colors. It’s very attractive for the price, and I think it could succeed."To read the entire issue of Miami Today online, subscribe to e-MIAMI TODAY, an exact digital replica of the printed edition.