David Martin Shares Concepts for New Marina, Residential Tower in Miami Beach:
Two options under discussion with differing tower heights and green space coverage
Developer David Martin presented two options to a City Commission Committee for his proposed project at the Miami Beach Marina – one with a residential tower that is 224 ft tall, the other 285 ft. The taller building allows for slightly more green space and a more open view corridor.
Martin, co-founder and President of Terra Group, first met with the City Commission’s Finance Committee last month to lay out the proposed terms of the deal including his plan to invest $35 million over 30 years to upgrade the marina along with the purchase of the air rights to the property at 300 Alton Road for what he estimates to be a fair market value of $50 million, though the ultimate price would depend on appraisals.
This week, Martin presented concept drawings for “Marina Park” to the Commission’s Land Use and Sustainability Committee. After initial conversations with members of the neighboring community and the City’s Planning Department staff, he offered two options for the development.
Design One includes a 224-ft tower with 16 floors, 336 feet in length, a 0.6-acre park plaza to the north and a 1.1 acre park on the west side of the tower fronting the bay.
Design two is for a 285-ft tower with 21 floors, 242 feet in length, a 0.75-acre park plaza and a 1.25-acre park that runs from Second Street through to the bay and with increased view corridors on each side.
Both designs include retail that Martin wants to be more neighborhood-centric than what is currently on the site. Ideas include a market, small retail stores, dive shop, boutique marine store, juice bar, and a coffee shop. On the ground floor would be a restaurant set back behind the green space. The site is currently home to Monty’s which abuts the Baywalk on the water.
Martin also provided more details on the proposed resiliency aspects of the development including a blue roof capable of allowing rainwater to evaporate for three days after a storm passes, a cistern to capture water not absorbed by the blue roof to be reused for irrigation and other purposes, and creation of a “living shore” and eco-dock habitat. Also included in the project, is an enhanced Baywalk integrated into the landscape.
With regard to the marina, he said his goal is to rebrand and reposition it to be “a premier yachting destination in this country.”
In addition to the capital improvements and payment for the air rights, he said, when completed, the project will contribute $6 million annually in local and property taxes. He estimates it will provide 2,372 total jobs – 2,111 non-recurring and 261 recurring jobs.
Commissioner Ricky Arriola said the project is an opportunity for the City to “take something not so beautiful and make it more beautiful” referring to what he called an “outdated building” and facilities.
The Committee's Chair, Commissioner Mark Samuelian, said he was “open to the tradeoff of higher” but the building “needs to be beautiful, world class.” He emphasized the need to continue to talk with the local community.
Martin said he was exploring the best ways to continue the conversation during COVID-19 restrictions and said he is looking into having a virtual community meeting with the South of Fifth Neighborhood Association. The two design studies, he said, would “hopefully” address the community concerns and present options for increasing the “transparency of the residential [building], of the marina and the bay and sunsets.”
Commissioner Michael Góngora said, for him, “The design is much more important than the height… [and] making sure that we obtain an adequate public benefit.” Góngora echoed the comments about the importance of neighborhood outreach. “Obviously, we want a project that builds consensus.”
The item will be discussed again at the Land Use Committee meeting on May 26.
Because the project involves a long-term lease of City-owned property, the sale of air rights, and a potential increase in FAR, it will require a public vote. In order to be on the November ballot, the City Commission would need to act on it by end of July.
Renderings courtesy David Martin, Marina Park
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