Monte Anderson and I are in Miami for the final reviews of student infill projects at the University of Miami on Friday. This morning we toured some of the infill sites in the Allapatha Neighborhood. We met Victor Dover at the Dover Kohl & Partners office and walked down the street for lunch. Victor told us the story of how Downtown South Miami came back from $6.00 per SF rents and boarded up storefronts in 1992 to what we were seeing today.
Today there are no vacant stores, new single story and mixed use buildings have been built. Dover Kohl pushed for eliminating minimum off street parking, but there was a lot of resistance, so the came up with a menu of common sense measures that each reduced the parking requirement. The 5 lane Main Street with occasional
on-street parking was reduced to 3 lanes with parking and the sidewalks we widened from 4′ to 15-18′. Arcades and awnings were permitted to encroach into the public right of way. The ban on sidewalk dining that had been in place since the Bronze Age was repealed.
The rents are now $60.00 per SF. They got the basics right and the market is stepping up to pay a serious premium for in-town amenities. Proper civilization makes money.