From deserted nighttime streets, to the place to live, shop, and play, Downtown Miami is experiencing an unprecedented transformation for South Florida. Miami is reinventing itself into a major metropolis, and the changes are more evident along the Biscayne Boulevard corridor.
Large condo projects are changing the skyline, and despite the uneasiness created by the recent slump in the real estate market, and the worries about the impact of a massive influx of new condos, construction remains strong. Major retail and mixed-use projects are underway, studies done by the City estimate the number of residences in the Downtown area, currently at 20,000, will reach 70,000 residents by 2030.
Planners remain optimistic in the long term about Miami real estate, and the Downtown area. The number of people working in Downtown today (105,300) is expected to grow by 34%, and as the area develops, many employed in the business district will consider the convenience of buying or renting real estate in the area, and avoiding the daily commute.
Developers are jumping to the opportunity: one mixed-use project, (Met Miami) is breaking ground this year, will add 120,000 square feet of retail space including dinning, entertainment, and national retailers. The first phase is under construction, including 447 residences, offering luxury condos and lofts.
Europeans and Latin Americans are also buying second homes in Miami, spending time and money in town. Many are buying properties in the new condo towers; even in the current condition of the market, Miami real estate is very attractive compared to other major markets. Part of the appeal is the diversity and international flavor of the city, the privileged location as a gateway to Latin America, and a major transportation, business and financial hub.
The city is offering incentives to retail business: assistance up to $100,000 to property owners for exterior improvements, and reimbursements up to $65,000 to tenant businesses for fixed interior improvements. The goal is to spur rehabilitation and job creation in Downtown Miami, especially in the Business District around historic Flagler Street. Real estate development will gain from commercial growth in the area, homeowners and tenants will enjoy the vitality of a vibrant 24-hour city with amenities for everyone.