Espacio USA unveils plans for project at 1400 Biscayne Blvd

Rendering of 1400 Biscayne Blvd. project.

With Downtown Miami gaining steam as a thriving residential district and hub for international commerce, a large international developer has finalized plans for a new complex that will include offices, high-end condominiums and street level retail space.

Espacio USA, the American division of Spain-based real estate firm Inmobiliaria Espacio, has unveiled its vision for the new mixed-use development at 1400 Biscayne Blvd. in Downtown Miami’s burgeoning arts and entertainment district. With construction set to begin in early 2013, the mixed-use development marks the first real estate project to be built in the area since the last real estate boom.

The project will consist of a 12-story, 103,000-square-foot Class A boutique office building designed to achieve LEED Gold certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and a 55-story luxury residential condominium tower with prime street level retail product, all set in the heart of Miami’s cultural arts and entertainment district, just north of the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts. The project is expected to require five years for completion. “Two years ago, we began investing in Downtown Miami and attracting new office tenants, and now we are entering the next phase of our plans to help revitalize Omni by bringing a class Aproduct to an underutilized area,” explained Alberto Muñoz, CEO of Espacio USA.

“With an iconic design and a healthy mix of residential and commercial uses, the development will serve as an anchor for its neighborhood, while bringing an additional economic boost to Downtown Miami.”

As a continuation of its international expansion, Espacio USA in 2010 completed the $35 million acquisition of a 150,000- square-foot office and retail building on the 1400 block of Biscayne Boulevard. The company invested $2 million in a capital improvement and marketing program that attracted a variety of quality tenants, increasing the building’s occupancy to 95 percent in two years.

Located at the center of Miami’s arts and entertainment district, the new development will rise directly north of the Adrienne Arsht Center and three blocks from the under-construction Museum Park complex. The AmericanAirlines Arena is five blocks south. Miami International Airport, Miami Beach, Brickell Financial District, and the city’s Health District are all less than 10 minutes away by car or public transit, which includes the Downtown Miami Trolley, Metrorail and Metromover.

The architects of the project are Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, which the company previously worked with in developing the successful Torre Espacio in Madrid, considered an iconic building in Madrid’s skyline. The internationally renowned architecture firm has designed other noteworthy properties worldwide, including the John Hancock Tower in Boston, The Grand Louvre in Paris and Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong. Most recently, the Pei Cobb Freed-designed Palazzo Lombardia in Milan, Italy was named “Best Tall Building in Europe” by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. The firm is collaborating with local architecture firm Rodriguez and Quiroga Architects.

“With the local economy rebounding and Miami’s urban core showing signs of growth in both the residential and commercial sectors, now is the time to move forward with our development on the 14th block of Biscayne Boulevard,” said José Antonio Fernández Gallar, director of Inmobiliaria Espacio. “We have invested over $80 million in the South Florida market in the past five years, and we look forward to being a long-term fixture in this community, helping to shape the city’s skyline and contributing to its economic growth.”

Espacio’s parent company, Grupo Villar Mir, is based in Madrid and has a robust international presence with 67 percent of its business taking place internationally. The company employs over 30,000 people and has a presence in 31 countries, particularly in Latin America and Europe. As the largest development to move forward in Downtown Miami’s Omni area in recent years, the new project is expected to generate an important economic impact.

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