Terra taps star architect Renzo Piano for NoBe condo Eighty Seven Park

July 24, 2015   |   South Florida Business Journal

Terra Group’s Eighty Seven Park condo project, on the north end of Miami Beach, exemplifies what the developer is all about: bold design by a star architect, luxury over density, and incorporating a building with its environment.

The Miami-based developer and partners Bizzi & Partners Development and New Valley LLC hired Pritzker Prize-Winning architect Renzo Piano to design the 68-unit, 18-story condominium at 8701 Collins Ave. The Italian’s work includes the Morgan Library in New York City, the NEMO science museum in Amsterdam, the expansion of the Art Institute of Chicago, the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, the New York Times Building and the Shard in London. This will be his first project in Florida.

The site is on the ocean and the north side of North Shore Open Space Park, which Terra Group President David Martin considers one of the project’s most attractive features.

“The views are not only of the ocean, but of the nature.” he said.

Piano designed Eighty Seven Park with suspended decks to take advantage of both viewpoints and not to block the public view of the ocean.

Terra Group bought a 230-room hotel there and could have added an additional 100 units. Instead, it opted for a lower density, but with larger spaces, upscale amenities and service that will be modeled after a hotel, Martin said.

“North Beach has a very bohemian atmosphere,” Martin said. “It has great juice bars, great restaurants. It has the feeling Miami Beach had 10 or 20 years ago, and it hasn’t been commercialized. When we bought the property, we were considering building a high-density hotel or condo. We decided to go in line with our philosophy of low density.”

The developer also contributed $10.5 million to the city for improvements at the neighboring park, including a beach walk and public access to the ocean from 87th Street. Residents of Eighty Seven Park will have a private 2-acre park and a botanical garden.

Martin said he’s close to launching sales for Eighty Seven Park after getting strong interest from potential buyers. Douglas Elliman will be broker. Units will average 2,500 square feet. Prices haven’t been determined.

Terra Group has a handful of projects moving forward, all aimed at the luxury market. The Grove at Grand Bay in Coconut Grove is sold out and will be delivered in the fourth quarter, while the neighboring Park Grove – a joint venture with the related Group – is under construction, Martin said. Miami Beach’s Glass is a month from completion and sold out. Atlantic 15 in Sunny Isles Beach is almost finished. The modern Doral single family home community will begin closings in August, while the Botaniko neighborhood in Weston should deliver its first homes in the first half of 2016. Its Doral Commons retail center should open in the fourth quarter.

Terra Group Announces More Tenants For New Broward Retail Center

April 19, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal

Apr 19, 2017, 12:45pm EDT


Commercial Real Estate

By: Brian Bandell

READ ON: bizjournals.com

Terra Group announced new tenants for its retail center at Pembroke Pines City Center, which is currently under construction.

The Miami-based developer previously announced that Publix Super Markets signed a 45,600-square-foot lease at the project. It now says the 200,000-square-foot first phase is 70 percent pre-leased, with additional tenants including Carl’s Patio, Cooper’s Hawk, BurgerFiSmoothie King, PizzaRev, Bento Cafe and the Halal Guys. Outback Steakhouse and City Mattress will occupy stand-alone buildings on the outparcel area.

“The vast majority of residential product in Broward County is located in the suburbs, and the increasing population and rising income levels in Pembroke Pines are driving retail demand and expansion,” said David Martin, president Terra. “Our mission at Terra has always been to develop projects that improve communities, and we’re doing just that with Pines City Center by meeting growing retail demand with a development that caters to residents’ everyday needs.”

The first phase of the retail project at the southwest corner of Pines Boulevard and Palm Avenue should be completed in late 2018. Terra Group acquired the 17.2-acre site for $15.94 million in 2016 from the City of Pembroke Pines.

The developer has a second parcel in City Center under contract with the city and holds approvals for 100,000 square feet of commercial space plus 385 apartments.

Recently, the city completed a $60 million civic building at City Center including a 3,500-seat performing arts center and conference hall, an outdoor plaza, a 10,000-square-foot art gallery and a new city hall.

“We are thrilled at the market’s response to City Center, and we’re pleased to be able to have several high quality retailers and restaurants that are new to the market join phase one,” said Rod Castan, president of leasing and management at Courtelis Co., which oversees leasing at Terra Group’s City Center. “Retailers are attracted to the combination of civic, entertainment, commercial and residential uses in a walkable setting that draws visitors from both the immediate neighborhood and across South Florida.”

Touting the region's accomplished young business leaders

August 4, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal

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Congratulations to our Director: Adam Adler, for being featured in South Florida Business Journal's "40 Under 40".


Age: 36

Title: Director

Company: Terra

Education: B.A in economics, Cornell University; MBA and Masters in finance, Northeastern University

Birthplace: Toronto, Ontario Canada

Current town/city: Pembroke Pines, Florida

First job: Working in a bindery at a printing company, while in high school. My first job as a professional was working on a restructuring team at Burger King.

Ultimate career goal: To create impactful and meaningful projects.

Hot topic in my field: Experiential Retail

Greatest business achievement: I am most proud of facilitating projects that enhance their surrounding communities.

Civic/charitable organization involvement: Big Brothers Big Sisters

Biggest mentor: Sandra Conwiser

Best career advice received: Remain true to yourself.

Fantasy job: I’m working in the industry I’ve always wanted to be in.

Guilty pleasure: Talenti Sea Salt Caramel Gelato

Best stress reliever: Cooking

Favorite book: The Count of Monte Cristo

Favorite website: Bloomberg.com

Favorite local spot: Capital Grille

Favorite vacation spot: Grand Cayman

In a movie, I’d be placed by: Patrick Warburton

I’d most like to have a business lunch with: Henry Kravis

My six-word memoir: Cautious optimism leads to great achievements.

(photos: South Florida Business Journal)

Terra Group plans redevelopment of newly acquired Miami site

August 21, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal


By Brian Bandell

READ on www.bizjournal.com

Terra Group acquired a strip of retail properties along Coral Way in Miami and plans to redevelop the site with the addition of self-storage.

Coral Way Storage Investments, led by Terra Group co-founder and President David Martin, acquired the property at 2749, 2761, 2769 and 2811 S.W. 22nd Street from Miami-based 2811 Coral Way LLC, managed by Robert A. Eckstein, Edward Schmidt, Josh Rodstein. A source close to the deal said it was for $4.25 million.

Coral Gables-based Venera Finance & Investment provided a loan of $16.82 million to the buyer. The proceeds would be enough to support a significant amount of construction.

The property currently has 13,572 square feet of retail on 26,250 square feet of land. It was developed between 1946 and 1951.

Martin said the deal is an example of Terra Group diversifying its portfolio.

"Coral Way is coming alive as an in-demand residential and commercial corridor that's perfectly situated between Coral Gables, Coconut Grove and Brickell,” Martin said. "We saw the need for a climate controlled self-storage facility that will serve nearby residents and businesses, especially those who have downsized their homes and offices. A series of shops and restaurants at street-level will cater to the Coral Way area's growing daily population.”

A site plan has yet to be approved by the city.

Terra Group is also building condos and an office building in Coconut Grove. Its other projects include a condo on the north side of Miami Beach, homes in Weston, and shopping centers plus apartments in Pembroke Pines.

Terra Group buys post office site in Broward, obtains $48M to build retail

October 12, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal

By: Brian Bandell

READ ON: www.bizjournals.com

Terra Group acquired a former post office property in Pembroke Pines and obtained a construction loan for a new retail center.

In 2016, the City of Pembroke Pines approved a deal to sell the 27.4-acre site at 16000 Pines Blvd. to Terra Group for $23.5 million in a two-phased purchase. The city had previously acquired the property from the U.S. Post Office for $17.88 million.

The first phase of that deal just closed.

Pembroke Pines sold about 10 acres to 16000 Pines Retail Investments, an affiliate of Miami-based Terra Group, for $11.49 million. The developer obtained a $47.78 million mortgage from Pineland Finance & Investment.

The “lifestyle” center was approved for 115,000 square feet of retail and restaurants. A post office of at least 7,240 square feet must be included in the project. It was designed by Beame Architectural Partnership.

"Our leasing team has seen strong interest among national brands and independent operators, and we look forward to announcing more details in the coming weeks ahead of breaking ground next year,” Terra Group President David Martin said. "Terra's significant investment in Pembroke Pines is a reflection of the community's growing residential population and the high barriers to entry that exist for new commercial development.”

The second phase of the project would have 120 single-family homes.

Meanwhile, Terra Group is building a Publix-anchored retail center of 300,000 square feet at Pines City Center further east on Pines Boulevard and plans to open that in late 2018.

Top Hispanic-Owned Businesses: Terra Group’s Martin on the secret of Miami's success

September 1, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal


READ ON: www.bizjournals.com

The real estate developer, who heads Miami-based development firm Terra, credits hometown pride as a major driver in the region’s ascent as an international hub of both leisure and business.

“One of the secrets for Miami’s success is that anyone from any country in the world can come here and feel like they can make Miami home and grow their business here,” Martin said. “Our residents can say, ‘Hey, I’m from France,’ or ‘I’m Colombian,’ but in the same breath, people also say, ‘I’m from Miami.’ We have a lot of pride in our city.”

Martin knows from experience how being welcomed by a new place can impact someone’s aspirations. His grandparents from both sides of the family immigrated to Miami from Cuba and established businesses here that exist to this day.

Martin’s maternal grandfather started a chain of funeral homes, Bernardo Garcia Funeral Homes, which can be found in four cities across Miami-Dade County, each of them in predominantly Hispanic neighborhoods, such as Hialeah.

On his father’s side, the family business was a cigar company.

For his part, Martin has carried on his family’s legacy in Miami business by founding Terra when he was just 23 years old in 2001 with his father, Pedro Martin.

Together, the two have transformed the firm from a builder of residential projects among growing submarkets, such as Kendall, to a full-service firm with an in-house construction division.

The firm is touted as having been among pioneers of the growing transit-oriented development trend that places apartment and condo towers just steps from mass transit, encouraging residents to eschew car ownership for public transportation.

Terra is also credited with bringing avant-garde design to Coconut Grove, a Miami neighborhood known for its lush greenery and bohemian feel.

The firm’s portfolio includes the Grove at Grand Bay, two luxury towers built on the site of the old Grand Bay Hotel. The condos grabbed Coconut Grove dwellers’ attention in a few ways. For one, units sets a record price for the neighborhood at an average of $1,100 per square foot. From an aesthetics standpoint, the project looks like nothing surrounding it, with each tower spiraling its way 20 stories into the sky.

At its core, however, Terra is pretty traditional, Martin said. The office has a family feel to it, even with a growing staff of more than 100.

“One of the things my father told me when we were starting out is, ‘David, people will work with you and do things for you if they love you or if they fear you. And you don’t wanna lead by fear. Your relationships will be much stronger and deeper on a basis of love,’” Martin said. “When we select people to join us at Terra, they’re with us for more than a decade.”


Editor's Note: This story is part of our cover package highlighting the leaders behind the region's top women-owned and Hispanic-owned companies. These businesses were featured because they ranked high on our lists. Scroll to the bottom of this article to get access to the full list of South Florida's Top Hispanic-Owned Businesses.

Cover Story: South Florida office market heats up with new development

October 20, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal

BY: Brian Bandell

READ ON: www.bizjournals.com

After five years of near stagnation, the South Florida office market is finally showing signs it’s rebounding, with several new office buildings opening this year and others in the works.

Growing rents and dwindling office space are fueling construction. Millions of square feet are proposed, mostly in hot submarkets that have drawn multiple projects.

It’s not exactly an office boom, but it’s a plethora of activity compared to the flatlining of office construction that followed the Great Recession.

“Over the last 10 years, we haven’t seen [enough] new office demand for us to be in a position to build new office,” Stiles Corp. President Scott MacLaren said. “Now we have seen supply and demand move to a point that demands [building].”

The growth couldn’t come at a better time, as local companies look for more options to expand, and the new technologically advanced office spaces could help lure new companies to the region.

Construction firms could also use a shot in the arm from these office projects, as residential development has slowed.

Through the first eight months of 2017, residential construction starts in South Florida dipped 29 percent to $3.43 billion, mostly because of a slowdown in the condo market, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. Nonresidential construction starts, which include multiple types of commercial real estate, were up 36 percent to $3.8 billion.



Office rents are up because, with so little new construction for a long time, vacant space has declined, said David Wigoda, senior VP with CBRE’s Capital Markets group. That gives landlords more leverage.

Over the past three years, many trophy office buildings in South Florida have traded for record prices – a combined $5.08 billion in deals since 2015, according to CBRE. When investors acquire a building, they typically increase rents to justify their purchase price, Wigoda said.

“South Florida has elevated itself to such a global city that our trophy ‘Class A’ one-of-a-kind buildings will continue to trade for these record-high prices,” he said.

The annual net absorption of office space has been steady, not spectacular, yet the higher rents in certain submarkets have made new development attractive, said Tere Blanca, president and CEO of Blanca Commercial Real Estate. She noted that South Florida has recorded consistent job growth in the financial and professional sectors that inhabit office buildings.

“All the metrics show it is the right time to deliver new product that is well-designed and differentiated from other buildings,” Blanca said. “If we don’t have new buildings, how can we attract companies here?”



South Florida had 1.08 million square feet of office space under construction in the second quarter, according to CBRE. Some of those buildings are opening soon.

In downtown Miami, All Aboard Florida is close to receiving a temporary certificate of occupancy on the 96,000-square-foot Three MiamiCentral, and the 196,000-square-foot Two MiamiCentral is already topped off, Blanca said. The buildings are part of the development around the Brightline passenger rail station that will include apartments, retail and restaurants. Blanca said the two offices are 55 to 60 percent leased.

The lure of working near public transportation and a food hall were big selling points, Blanca said.

With a view of Miami International Airport, the 250,000-square-foot 800 Waterford office building opened this summer and is 25 percent leased, said Brad Simpkins, senior director of Southeast investments at TH Real Estate, which developed the building with Allianz Real Estate of America. They already own most of the Waterford office park, so the developers knew tenants wanted to expand.

Simpkins said 800 Waterford is on pace to be fully stabilized, with enough occupancy to support positive cash flow, within 12 months of opening.

Preleasing has been slower in Palm Beach Gardens, where the speculative 63,500-square-foot Gardens Innovation Center was recently completed. Broker Neil Merin, chairman of NAI/Merin Hunter Codman, said the building has no leases, but now that companies can tour the finished space, he’s seen more interest.

“Unless people can see something, they won’t lease it,” Merin said.

Merin’s client self-funded Gardens Innovation Center without waiting for preleases, but many developers aren’t willing to put so much of their money on the line, and prefer to combine equity with a construction loan. If a developer can’t obtain a solid percentage of preleases, obtaining construction financing is nearly impossible.

Andrew Easton, VP of Easton Group, said his firm is seeking to prelease about half of the 160,000-square-foot office building it has the rights to construct at Northwest 102nd Avenue and Northwest 19th Street in Doral before moving forward. After about a year of looking, still no deals.

“There are not a lot of  80,000-square-foot tenants in South Florida,” Easton said. “The average tenant is 3,500 to 5,000 square feet. That’s why this is still a piece of dirt.”



The office development is coming at a time when many tenants up for lease renewal are facing significantly higher rents.

During the bottom of the market in 2012, landlords were cutting favorable deals for tenants to keep space occupied, but many of those leases are expiring, and those same tenants will face “sticker shock” as their rates increase by double digits, Merin said. Many tenants will seek ways to save on costs, such as having a more efficient layout to reduce the size of their leased space.

Matthew W. Goodman, a managing director with JLL who specializes in tenant representation, said it’s very expensive for tenants to relocate their offices because of buildout costs, so that might prevent them from leaving. In order to lure new tenants, office developers would have to offer generous tenant improvements budgets, and existing buildings might do the same to retain tenants, he said.

“The competition is always good,” Wigoda said. “When new buildings enter a market, if a landlord doesn’t want to lose tenants, it will have to reinvest in its buildings.”  



Certain submarkets have attracted major office proposals, and some of them have already broken ground. Here’s a look at the hottest areas:

·        Coconut Grove: The 78,000-square-foot Mary Street office building and a 44,000-square-foot office at 3484 Main Highway have already broken ground. Approvals were obtained for 73,000 square feet at One CocoWalk and 68,000 square feet in 27@Lincoln.

Tom Roth, a partner with Grass River Partners, which co-owns CocoWalk, said a new office there would create more daytime traffic for shops and restaurants. With vacancy rates of near 1 percent for Class A office space in Coconut Grove, Roth expects to generate strong rents.

The One CocoWalk office should start construction in the first quarter of 2018 and be completed in mid-2019. Roth said he’s in serious negotiations with four large tenants that would mostly fill up the building.

“If you add up the four buildings [proposed in the neighborhood], it’s not even close to the size of one building on Brickell,” Roth said.

Terra Group President David Martin, who is also building several condos in Coconut Grove, said his Mary Street office building will allow residents to work close to home. His project is 40 to 50 percent leased.

·        Downtown Miami: Global developer Hines struck a deal with Miami Worldcenter to build a 45-story office tower, which would be the largest office tower completed downtown since 2010.

Michael Harrison, senior managing director with Hines, said the building would have 500,000 to 600,000 square feet of office, with retail on the ground floor and maybe a multifamily component. It would break ground around the third quarter of 2018 and open in 2021.

Hines selected the Miami Worldcenter site because it had great access to both highway and public transportation, proximity to museums and entertainment venues, and a complement of homes, retail and restaurants, Harrison said.

So far, Harrison said he’s received requests for proposals for tenants of 50,000, 75,000 and 120,000 square feet.

·        Wynwood: Construction started on Wynwood Annex, with 47,000 square feet of office, while approvals were obtained for 79,548 square feet at Cube Wynwood, 26,600 square feet at W House, and 23,618 square feet at DS Wynwood. The Gateway office building, between Wynwood and Midtown, would total 200,000 square feet.

JLL's Goodman said the new projects in Wynwood are asking for rates comparable to the most expensive buildings in downtown Miami – over $50 a square foot. Tenants are taking a wait-and-see attitude on Wynwood because it’s a new market for Class A office, he said.

“They have to attract tenants that don’t typically work in that area,” Goodman said.

·        Coral Gables: The 49,379-square-foot 2020 Salzedo office was recently completed, and 57,700 square feet of office at Giralda Place is nearly done. The big impact could come from the Plaza at Coral Gables, which is seeking a redesign of the mixed-use project with 474,000 square feet of office.

Blanca, who represents Plaza developer Agave Ponce, said she’s not actively leasing for it now, but the 8 percent vacancy rate for Coral Gables and the rents of over $41 a square foot make her confident in the project.

·        Fort Lauderdale: Stiles Corp. received approval to build 355,000 square feet of office at 225 E. Las Olas Blvd. on a site leased from Broward College – the city’s first major new office building in nearly 10 years.

MacLaren said about 500,000 square feet of space has been filled in downtown Fort Lauderdale over the past five years. The rents of $50 a square foot are enough to financially justify development, and an influx of thousands of residential units in downtown has better positioned the area to attract a good workforce, he said.

MacLaren is confident Stiles can sign enough preleases to build in early 2018.

Comreal Fort Lauderdale broker Tim Talbot is concerned that new development could take tenants from existing buildings and leave large vacancies. The trend he’s seen is downsizing by local tenants, including several major law firms.

“A new building would lead to higher vacancies and might bring the values down,” Talbot said.

·        West Palm Beach: Approvals have been granted to mixed-use projects with office space of 200,000 square feet for One West Palm, 308,000 square feet for Transit Village and 121,000 square feet at the Cosmopolitan.

Billionaire Jeff Greene said he would personally fund One West Palm. The two 30-story towers, which would also have apartments, a hotel and a health club, are waiting on height approval from the FAA.

Greene said he hasn’t started leasing yet because West Palm Beach isn’t a preleasing market.

“Filling 200,000 square feet shouldn’t be that hard,” Greene said. “We are competing with a bunch of old buildings, most from the 1980s. The only new one is CityPlace tower, and it’s only 15 stories tall and it’s fully leased.”

Not everyone thinks conditions are ripe for a new office tower in the city. Most tenants aren’t ready to pay the high rents needed to justify a new office building in downtown West Palm Beach, Merin said.

Terra launches second phase of Publix-anchored retail project in Broward

November 2, 2017   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell  –  Senior Reporter, South Florida Business Journal

READ ON: www.bizjournals.com/southflorida

Terra has launched the second phase of its retail project at Pines City Center. The development will be anchored by Publix Super Markets.

The Miami-based developer secured a $28 million construction loan from Oakland Finance and Investment to build 100,000 square feet of retail at the southwest corner of Pines Boulevard and Palm Avenue in Pembroke Pines. Terra paid $8.5 million to the city to acquire land for the second phase.

The first phase, with 200,000 square feet, broke ground in fall 2016 with a $54.3 million construction loan. Terra purchased the land from the City of Pembroke Pines, which encouraged the development of a mixed-use project in the City Center area.

"More than 65 percent of the total leasable space at Pines City Center has been pre-leased by tenants including Publix, Hobby Lobby, West Marine, Carl’s Patio, Cooper’s Hawk, Outback Steakhouse and BurgerFi,” Terra President David Martin said. "Construction of both retail phases is expected to be completed in late 2018. Once finished, Pines City Center will meet rising demand for lifestyle-oriented retail in West Broward’s growing suburban market.”

Courtelis Co. is the leasing agent for the shopping center. The Publix will occupy 45,600 square feet.

Terra also has the right to build 385 apartments at City Center.

Recently, the city completed a $60 million civic building at City Center including a 3,500-seat performing arts center and conference hall, an outdoor plaza, a 10,000-square-foot art gallery and a new city hall.


NEIGHBORHOOD TOUR: Coconut Grove's next renaissance has arrived

November 25, 2016   |   South Florida Business Journal

BY: Nina Lincoff

Read on: www.bizjournals.com/southflorida

While much of Miami and Miami-Dade County can be thought of as new — or relatively new — Coconut Grove is not. It’s one of the oldest, if not the oldest permanent settlement in Miami-Dade, getting its start in the late 1800’s before being annexed by the City of Miami in 1925. And now, more than a century after residents began calling Coconut Grove home, the jungly waterfront enclave is entering its next era as a luxury real estate, retail and cultural hub.

To some extent, the Grove has already seen luxury real estate and restaurant, retail and nightlife hot spots. But a confluence of new developments either set to open or underway, in addition to a high-concentration of local restaurants and the turnover of legacy retail projects to new investors sets the stage for the Grove’s next incarnation.

Miami-based Terra Group is one developer that’s changing the landscape of Coconut Grove. Terra is responsible for the two twisting towers of the Grove at Grand Bay project, which is ready for residents to move in. The Grove at Grand Bay sits on the former Grand Bay Hotel site, a former icon of Grove’s past.

The twisting twins are just down Bayshore Drive from another Terra project, the Park Grove complex which the developer is producing along with the Related Group. The Park Grove condominium project is currently under construction and when complete, will add three high-rises to Coconut Grove’s waterfront.

On the retail side, Coconut Grove’s CocoWalk open-air retail center was acquired last year by Federal Realty Investment Trust in partnership with Grass River Partners and Comras Co. The new owners seek to update CocoWalk and transform the retail center into an integral part of Coconut Grove. 

In terms of restaurants, a local outpost of Harry’s Pizzeria from chef/owner Michael Schwartz opened in the Grove, as did the new seafood concept the Spillover from local restaurateur Matt Kuscher. 

These join Glass & Vine, a concept led by Miami chef Giorgio Rapicavoli as well as a new concept from Grove marquee Strada, and Ariete, a restaurant from Schwartz alum Michael Beltran. A Panther Coffee also recently opened in Coconut Grove, complementing the two Starbucks locations. 

Development is also picking up near Coconut Grove’s gateways. A joint venture between three developers aims to build the Cassa Grove apartment building about a block from the Coconut Grove Metrorail station, and a major mixed-used project near the Douglas Road Metrorail station could be on its way. 

Park of the Grove’s appeal is its jungly environment and beautiful architecture, nearby attractions like the Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, the Barnacle Historic State Park and the Kampong National Tropical Botanical Garden play off of the landscape and architecture.

Coconut Grove also has a history as a Bahamanian enclave, and recent efforts have sought to highlight the neighborhood’s diversity. Last year was the opening of the Coconut Grove Village West Visitor Center and the Kroma Gallery. 

These are just some of the variety of projects and renovations coming to Coconut Grove. It’s safe to say that in a couple years, the area that Grovites know and love will have a few new neighbors. 

Want to check out other hot areas in South Florida See our neighborhood tours of Miami Beach, Delray Beach, Wynwood or Fort Lauderdale's FAT Village.

Co-working center slated for Coconut Grove after Terra purchases property

October 4, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

Startup co-working venture URBIN has secured a future location in Miami's Coconut Grove after a new real estate deal, said Richi Kapoor, CEO of Coconut Grove-based Location Ventures.

This would be the second location for URBIN, as it acquired an office building in Coral Gables in July, with plans to convert it into a co-working center.

In the new deal, CP Miami LLC, an affiliate of Hollywood-based MG3 Developer Group, sold the four-story commercial building at 3138 Commodore Plaza for $7.2 million to the partnership of Terra, led by David Martin; Rudy Touzet of Banyan Street Capital; and URBIN, Kapoor said. In addition to being an equity partner in the ownership, URBIN signed a 99-year ground lease for the property, he added.

Martin and Touzet already had the property under contract, and URBIN wanted it for a co-working center, so it joined them in the deal, Kapoor said.

“With Coconut Grove fast becoming one of Miami’s most in-demand live-work-play destinations, we’re excited about bringing URBIN to the neighborhood through the adaptive reuse of an existing property located on one of the Grove’s most desirable streets,” Martin and Touzet said in a joint statement.

The seller was represented by Cushman & Wakefield's Miguel Alcivar, Dominic Montazemi, Scott O’Donnell, Greg Miller and Jason Hochman.

Constructed in 1986 on a 15,000-square-foot lot, the building currently totals 32,906 square feet with a large, open courtyard. Kapoor said URBIN plans to add 10,000 to 20,000 square feet of air-conditioned space to the building by creating an enclosed glass structure over the atrium and some of the walkways.

“We don’t want to be just a one-size-fits-all co-working centers,” Kapoor said.

The completely renovated building would have a wellness facility, a technology and entrepreneur incubator, art and creative studios, corporate VIP suites, and a micro retail market.

“The whole point is to help the boutique retailer who can no longer afford the best locations, and give them access to the top neighborhoods,” Kapoor said.

It should take 20 to 24 months to complete the renovation, he added. Construction should start in eight to 12 months. The building is currently vacant, he added.

Kapoor has lived in Coconut Grove for 12 years and had an office there.

“We are seeing this great resurgence in Coconut Grove, with beautiful condo projects, great homes, and the center of the village is coming alive with refreshed development,” Kapoor said. “Commodore Plaza is the heart of Coconut Grove.”

Kapoor said URBIN has raised $41 million for the co-working venture in the past six months. It will fund the Coconut Grove location, the Coral Gables center that he hopes to partially open in February 2019, and more locations. The company also plans to build co-living centers, where people would rent beds and share common amenities.

In addition to his personal investment, Kapoor said the investors in URBIN include former New York Jets and New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma; Gabriel Navarro, Marcel Navarro, and Martin Pico of MMG Equity Partners; Jason Shapiro of Aztec Group; and Marty Halpern of UnitedTranzactions.

Kapoor said URBIN’s team of local developers knows South Florida’s neighborhoods better than many of the national co-working and co-living companies.

“People want to get involved with the co-working business because it’s an emerging asset class,” Kapoor said. “People are willing to pay a lower top-line price to get access to the best neighborhoods and cities.”

Construction Tour: Old meets new in Coconut Grove

October 11, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

One of the oldest communities in Miami, Coconut Grove suddenly has many new projects sprouting up near its historic buildings and lush tree canopies.

Located along Biscayne Bay, Coconut Grove is known for its strong private schools, its parks, and the boats along its bayfront. For decades, its signature commercial center has been Cocowalk, but that complex struggled coming out of the recession. Now developers are breathing new life into Cocowalk, and starting many other projects in the neighborhood.

The new projects featured include:

• Park Grove, three condo towers by the Related Group and Terra. Two towers have been finished and the third tower, One Park Grove, is expected to be completed in late 2019.

• The redevelopment of Cocowalk, which will have a 85,000-square-foot office building with 20,000 square feet of ground-floor retail. It's slated for completion in the fourth quarter of 2019.

• The 100-room Mr. C Hotel, the first of its brand in Florida, is expected to open in winter 2019.

• Regatta Harbour will feature over 100,000 square feet of retail and restaurants, including a food hall and specialty market, on city-leased land at Dinner Key. The retail portion could open in summer 2019 and the restaurants would be ready in 2020.

• Metronomic Place recently broke ground with plans for 44 all-suite hotel rooms, 3,200 square feet of retail, and 5,000 square feet of offices. It's slated for completion in winter 2019.

• Terra and Mayfair Real Estate Advisors are building the 75,000-square-foot Mary Street office building, which already has a major tenant slated to move in during 2020.

• The Optimum office building will have 44,000 square feet of office space and 6,500 square feet for restaurants when its construction is completed.

• The 52-unit Arbor condo/townhome project is under construction.

• The 26-unit Fairchild Coconut Grove condo is scheduled to finish construction in fall 2019.

• Terra has filed plans to demolish the Summerhill Apartments and construct a 20-story residential and office building.

• Metronomic plans to build Commodore Place, with hotel rooms and retail, along Commodore Plaza.

• The city is still working on plans to revamp the historic Coconut Grove Playhouse with more office and retail space.

With all of this development going on, Coconut Grove could look very different in two years.

Developer behind Miami Beach headquarters hotel explains pros of project

October 30, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Billy Jean Louis

The Miami Beach Convention Center aims to host larger conventions, but to reach that goal, it needs a headquarters hotel.

On the Nov. 6 ballot, the city's voters will see the proposal for a 185-foot-tall, 800-room hotel that would connect to the convention center. It needs 60 percent approval to pass. David P. Martin, president of development firm Terra Group, would develop the hotel in a joint venture with Jackie Soffer, chairman and CEO of Turnberry.

"It's going to generate significant revenue and improve the quality of tourism on Miami Beach," Martin said.

The hotel project, at the corner of 17th Street and Convention Center Drive, would include a large, resort-style pool deck atop a 53-foot-tall pedestal. It would also have an 8,000-square-foot spa, 5,000-square-foot fitness center, and ballrooms. There would be 320 valet-only parking spaces.

Martin said he's not asking for city or county taxpayer money, as the nearly $365 million project will be privately funded. Once approved, the first year will be spent on permitting, designing and engineering. There will be two years of construction.

The hotel would allow the convention center, which recently reopened after a three-year $620 million renovation, to attract "priority one" and "priority two" conventions.Those with 1,500 rooms reserved at a hotel are considered priority one, while those with 500 to 1,499 rooms reserved are priority two.

Priority one conventions have a high economic output with a low traffic component, Martin said. Without the hotel, the convention center would attract "priority three" conventions, such as auto shows. Those conventions have high traffic counts, with low economic output for businesses, he said.

"We're honored to have the potential to be the developer of this," Martin said. "We're hopeful we can get everybody's vote."

Lincoln Road Business Improvement District Executive Director Tim Schmand endorses the hotel.

The role that a convention center plays in a community is that it attracts businesses, he said. But to attract these businesses, the center needs to have a hotel with enough capacity that would allow event planners too book the majority of their participants there, he said.

"The way that I look at it is that … the more business we do on Miami Beach, the more business there'll be in Miami," Schmand said.

In 2016, a previous headquarters project didn't move forward. It required 60 percent support to pass, but only secured 54 percent. Opponents of that project said the site was too small for the hotel, and that it would worsen traffic.


Voters approve Miami Beach Convention Center hotel

November 6, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Billy Jean Louis

The second try was the charm in the Miami Beach Convention Center's quest to secure a hotel.

With 92 percent of votes in, 64 percent of Miami voters OK'd on Tuesday a proposed lease agreement with the developers behind the newest plan for a convention headquarters hotel. The hotel needed 60 percent of the vote to pass.

Voters approved a 185-foot-tall, 800-room hotel that will connect to the convention center. David P. Martin, president of development firm Terra Group, will develop the hotel in a joint venture with Jackie Soffer, chairman and CEO of Turnberry.

“This campaign has always been about one thing: creating a more livable, sustainable Miami Beach," Martin said. "Miami Beach residents have embraced our vision for completing the Convention Center District with a privately-financed hotel that will spur economic growth, attract world-class events, strengthen infrastructure with an eye toward resiliency, and improve quality of life by reducing traffic and funding education."

The hotel project, at the corner of 17th Street and Convention Center Drive, will include a large, resort-style pool deck atop a 53-foot-tall pedestal. It will also have an 8,000-square-foot spa, 5,000-square-foot fitness center, and ballrooms. There will be 320 valet-only parking spaces.

The first year will be spent on permitting, designing and engineering, followed by two years of construction.

The hotel would allow the convention center, which recently reopened after a three-year, $620 million renovation, to attract "priority one" and "priority two" conventions. Those with 1,500 rooms reserved at a hotel are considered priority one, while those with 500 to 1,499 rooms reserved are priority two. Priority one conventions have a high economic output with a low traffic component, industry experts said.

Voters faced a previous hotel measure by another developer in 2016. It required 60 percent support to pass, but only secured 54 percent. Opponents of that project said the site was too small for the hotel, and that it would worsen traffic.

"It's important to have a convention hotel," President & CEO of the Greater Miami and the Beaches Hotel Association Wendy Kallergis said, adding that there's a significant list of conventions that won't book without a convention hotel.



South Florida CRE companies embark on the Grove’s newest transit-oriented development

December 6, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

Juneau Construction Company

Miami’s approach to a sustainable future includes transit-oriented mixed-use developments along main travel arteries, away from flood-prone areas, yet close to shopping, dining, and entertainment. Grove Central, a modern mixed-used project being built by Juneau Construction Company for developers Grass River Property and Terra Group, checks all those boxes.

“Terra is focused on advancing a sustainable and resilient development model that combines residential density, a balanced mix of commercial uses, and access to multi-modal transit options,” said Terra president David Martin. “By prioritizing responsible design in well-located areas, projects like these will adapt to the long-term impacts of climate change and promote urban development in high-elevation areas.”

“Grove Central will bring this vision to life along one of Miami’s most important transit corridors, creating an everyday amenity for nearby residents and filling a void in our housing market,” said Martin.

Juneau Construction Co. is working on an offsite water main for the residential and retail components that will be added in tandem with a privately-funded upgrade of the existing Coconut Grove Metrorail station.

“We are thrilled to be working on our third project with Grass River in the Coconut Grove area, and excited to have an opportunity to also work with Grove-based Terra Group,” says Russ Beck, operations manager for Juneau Construction Company.

When completed, the 883,000-square-foot mixed-use development will include a 23-story tower with 180,000 square feet of office, 40,000 square feet of retail, and 850 parking spaces. In Grove Central’s residential component, 270 market rate apartments will be joined by 48 co-living units with 200 beds. Co-living floorplans typically have multiple bedrooms and baths, integrated modern technology, and shared common areas. This living arrangement is increasingly popular nationwide because it offers affordable rents to technology-savvy renters who seek a social lifestyle in brand-new complexes like this one.

“Co-living is a good fit for this location,” says Beck. “Grove Central is only a few minutes from downtown by Metrorail and 10 minutes by car. I could see University of Miami students wanting to live in this type of space and commuting to campus on the Metrorail next door. And it’s convenient to Coconut Grove’s cultural, dining, and entertainment options.”

The train station’s escalators, elevators, restrooms, and flooring will be replaced, and upgrades to the security entrance, bus terminal, and drop-off lanes are part of the improvement plans for the multimodal transit hub.

“During construction, offsite parking for Metrorail users will either be built or leased very nearby, and we’ll install overhead protection for the public so access to the station is never interrupted.” The entire project is expected to be completed in late 2021.

Globally-recognized Touzet Studio, based in Miami, designed the mixed-use project whose retail components will be a boon to passengers moving through the Greater Miami by rail or bus.  In addition to offering businesses an opportunity to reach a high-volume market of riders from Pinecrest to Downtown Miami and even to Miami International Airport, Grove Central’s retail components will supply practical services and amenities to residents and office users at the new complex.

In 2014, Juneau Construction Co. worked with Grass River on Grove Station Tower, the 186-unit mixed-use residential tower on SW 27th Avenue just north of the Coconut Grove Metrorail station. That project is at near-full capacity. Juneau is currently at work on Grass River’s renovation and redevelopment of CocoWalk, the 28-year-old retail and entertainment center in Coconut Grove’s business district. Federal Realty Investment Trust and the Comras Company are also partners in the project, which includes a new Class A office building.

Developer aims to break price record with $68M Miami Beach penthouse

December 6, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

A penthouse in the Eighty Seven Park condominium under construction in Miami Beach has been listed for $68 million – a price that would break the record for the highest condo sale in Miami-Dade County.

Located atop the 18-story building designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Renzo Piano, the penthouse would total 25,000 square feet, with 12,410 square feet on the interior and the rest outdoor terraces. It would have six bedrooms, eight bathrooms, three powder rooms, a personal fitness center, two private elevators, a home cinema, an outdoor theater, a putting green, two summer kitchens, a hammam, two 40-foot-long infinity pools, and a Jacuzzi.

The two-story penthouse was designed by RDAI.

“We looked to provide a serenely relaxed atmosphere,” RDAI Design Director Julia Capp said. “Its incredible location and views allow the light to gently infuse the interior and maintain contact with the exterior – which was an integral part of the design.”

The 66-unit Eighty Seven Park is under construction at 8701 Collins Ave., next to a city park on the north side of Miami Beach. The development team is a partnership of Miami-based Terra Group, Bizzi & Partners Development, Hong Kong-based Great Eagle Holdings, and New Valley LLC, a subsidiary of Miami-based Vector Group (NYSE: VGR). Stantec and West 8 are also part of the design team.

Terra said Eighty Seven Park is 80 percent presold. Douglas Elliman is the listing broker.

“Eighty Seven Park is a project that is truly singular for the South Florida market,” Douglas Elliman Chairman Howard M. Lorber said. “Its world-class architecture by Renzo Piano, direct oceanfront location, high-caliber interior design and luxury suite of amenities has proven to be appealing to buyers from across the United States and from around the globe.”

The current record holder in Miami-Dade is the penthouse at Faena House in Miami Beach, which was purchased in 2015 for $60 million by an LLC tied to billionaire hedge fund manager Kenneth Griffin.

Soffer, Martin get first OK for Miami Beach Convention Center hotel

July 17, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

The Miami Beach City Commission has given initial approval for a deal with Jackie Soffer of Turnberry Associates and David Martin of Terra to build a signature hotel at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

Commissioners unanimously approved the developer’s bid on first reading on July 17, with a second reading required by the end of the month. If they vote for the lease and development agreement again, the item would go before the city’s voters in November, with 60 percent approval required for passage.

Tourism leaders in Miami Beach have been trying for over a decade to build a convention center hotel because many large conventions require an on-site hotel. The convention center is currently undergoing a major renovation and expansion.

"Our hotel will integrate world-class design and connect the newly reimagined Miami Beach Convention Center to the surrounding commercial district, cultural venues and public spaces,” Martin said. "The result will be an urban campus that enhances quality of life for the Miami Beach community, creates significant economic impact, includes an optimal traffic mitigation plan and maximizes the city’s investment in the convention center. Today’s unanimous approval from the commission was an important step in this process, and we look forward to returning for second reading next week.”

The plan by Soffer and Martin, operating as Miami Beach Connect, was a response to the city’s request for proposals to lease the 2.5-acre site at the corner of 17th Street and Convention Center Drive. They were the only respondent.

The 800-room hotel would rise 185 feet. There would be a large, resort-style pool deck atop a 53-foot-tall pedestal. The hotel would also have an 8,000-square-foot spa, 5,000-square-foot fitness center, and ballrooms. It would have 320 valet-only parking spaces.

It was designed by Arquitectonica. The project is required by the city to achieve Gold-level LEED certification for environmental sustainability.

The hotel would cost $348 million to $362 million to develop, according to Miami Beach Connect.

Miami Beach Connect pledged to fully fund the project without public dollars. The developer agreed to pay the city 2.5 percent of gross revenue from all components except food and beverage service, which would pay 1.25 percent. The payment would be about $2.6 million by the fifth year of the deal. Miami Beach Connect agreed to make it a union hotel.


Terra joins plan to build mixed-use project at Metrorail station

April 19, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

Terra has joined the development team that plans to build a mixed-use project at the Coconut Grove Metrorail Station.

In 2016, Miami-Dade County approved a 90-year lease with GRP Grove Metro Station LLC, an affiliate of Coconut Grove-based Grass River Property, for the five-acre site near the Metrorail station at 2780 S.W. 27th Ave. in Miami. The developer had envisioned a mixed-use project but the exact size and design was subject to county approval.
On Jan. 23, GRP Grove Metro Station LLC filed a pre-application with county officials for the project, now called Grove Central. That application indicated that Coconut Grove-based Terra, led by David Martin, has joined the development team.

Terra is well known for building mixed-use projects in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, especially condos and retail centers.

A spokesman for Terra and Grass River said the developers couldn’t comment because the plans displayed in the January pre-application were undergoing significant revisions. Developers file pre-applications so they can receive feedback from county staff before seeking final approval.


The preliminary plans for Grove Station featured 134,228 square feet of commercial space, a 206-room hotel totaling 143,796 square feet with a pool deck, and 898 parking spaces. The building would rise 11 stories, with retail on the first two levels.

Also included in the preliminary plans are bus and drop-off lanes for the Metrorail station. The developer would also build enhancements to the rail station.

Terra and Grass River are working with architects Touzet Studio and Beame Architectural Partnership, planning firm Kimley-Horn, and lawyers Al Dotson and Javier Avino of Bilzin Sumberg.

Grove Central would continue the wave of transit-oriented development in Miami-Dade. There’s also a major mixed-use project planned at the Douglas Road Metrorail Station.

Terra, Grass River change plan for Metrorail site

May 1, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

Terra and Grass River Property have revealed changes to their plan to build a mixed-use project at the Coconut Grove Metrorail station as they seek to get in line for county bond funding.

GRP Grove Metro Station LLC, an affiliate of the two Miami-based developers, hold a 90-year ground lease signed with Miami-Dade County in 2016 for the 5-acre site near the station at 2780 S.W. 27th Ave. in Miami. The preliminary development plan for Grove Central, filed in January, called for a 206-room hotel and 134,228 square feet of commercial space.

The new vision for Grove Central has scrapped the hotel in favor of apartments.
On May 1, the Miami-Dade Commission will consider placing Grove Station in line for $4.5 million through the Builder Better Communities bond program. The money would reimburse the developer for infrastructure improvements on the site. That application describes Grove Central as 288 apartments and 135,000 square feet of commercial space.

“We want to activate these stations so not only are they used as park-and-ride facilities, but places where people can live and entertain and enjoy a new way of living without having to depend on the car,” Terra President David
Martin said.

Martin said at least 15 percent of the apartments at Grove Station would be workforce housing, meaning they would be attainable for people earning up to 140 percent of the area's median income. There would also be a parking garage with 898 spaces, including about 200 spaces for the public. The developers would make significant improvements to the Metrorail station, roadways and pedestrian paths leading to the Underline linear park, which will be developed underneath the Metrorail.

Martin said he plans to make Grove Station a sustainable project with solar panels, recaptured rain water for irrigation, and other green features.

“We can create the business case to create not only appropriate retail offerings and appropriately-priced residential units but create the beautification of this node,” he said.

The developers are working with Touzet Studio, Beam Architectural Partnership and Walter Meyer of Local Office Landscape Architecture.

The developer’s application for county bond funds said Grove Central would cost $162.3 million, including $14.4 million in infrastructure costs such as relocating two water mains. It would create 959 jobs during construction and 140 jobs upon completion.

The apartment complex would have 192 one-bedroom units of about 550 square feet and 96 two-bedroom units of about 880 feet. It estimates that rents for the one-bedroom units would average $1,705.

Martin said the $4.5 million bond would be a good investment for the county because the project would create a significant amount of jobs and generate millions of dollars in property taxes. In addition, the ground lease would give the county 3 percent of the developer’s gross income.

The taxpayer-funded Building Better Communities bond was passed by voters in 2004, with $75 million of it dedicated to fund infrastructure for private economic development projects. All of that money was previously allocated to development projects, but the county mayor hasn’t awarded all of those funds because some projects have been slow to move forward. If the mayor decides that a project isn’t moving forward and decides to withdraw the funds, that would put Grove Station in line for the money.

Martin said site work is ongoing and he hopes to break ground in late 2018 or early 2019. The project could be completed in about two years, he said.

“Miami-Dade County has been trying to stimulate development on this property dating back to 1998,” Grass River Property President Peter Lapointe said. "Now, 20 years later, we are moving forward with the creation of a true multimodal destination that can be easily accessed by train, bus, car, foot or bike."

Avra Jain, Terra president buy development site in Miami's Liberty City

July 25, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

A company led by Avra Jain, who is well-known for hospitality projects; Terra President and co-founder David P. Martin; and Joe Del Vecchio acquired an industrial development site in the Liberty City neighborhood of Miami.

The 4.74-acre vacant lot at 1010 N.W. 72nd St. sold for $3.75 million to 1010 NW Investments LLC, which is managed by Martin and Jain. Lion Financial provided a $12.5 million mortgage to the buyers and would likely provide them with enough funds to start construction.

The seller was Miami-based 1010 NW LLC, led by David Avan.

The site was recently approved for development of 90,606 square feet of warehouse space and 8,000 square feet of office space.

Jain said the developers are in negotiations with potential tenants for a sports entertainment center in the project.

"The potential tenants have innovative and create concepts that would be good for the neighborhood and Miami," she said.

The property last traded for $2.05 million in 2015. It’s just north of Miami Northwest Senior High and the Liberty Square affordable housing community, which is being redeveloped by Miami-based Related Group.

Jain has developed many hospitality projects, including the revitalization of the Vagabond Hotel in MiMo. Martin’s Terra is one of South Florida’s largest developers, with experience in residential, retail and office projects. Jain said Del Vecchio, principal architect at access3d in Miami, has worked with her many times in the past.


Plan for convention center hotel in Miami Beach headed to voters

July 25, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

Miami Beach voters will decide whether to approval a deal on a hotel at the Miami Beach Convention Center for the second time in two years, but the current proposal has significant differences that city officials hope will pass muster with its citizens.

On Wednesday, the city commission unanimously approved putting the lease deal with Miami Beach Connect, led by Jackie Soffer of Turnberry Associates and David P. Martin of Terra, on the Nov. 6 ballot. It will need 60 percent approval to pass.

In March 2016, a proposal by Portman Holdings for a 300-foot-tall, 800-room hotel at the convention center fell short, with 54 percent of voters in favor.

Miami Beach Connect’s hotel would be much shorter, at 185 feet tall, and the highest part of the building would be set back further from the street. It would still have 800 rooms.

City tourism officials say that a large hotel is key to attracting larger events to the convention center, which is currently undergoing a major renovation.

“Miami Beach has been awaiting the development of a convention hotel on this site for years, and our Miami Beach Connect team is ready to fulfill that long-held vision,” Soffer and Martin said in a statement. "Our hotel will integrate world-class design and advanced resiliency measures, and will connect the newly reimagined Miami Beach Convention Center to surrounding commercial areas, cultural venues and public spaces. The result will be an urban district that improves quality of life for Miami Beach residents, creates significant economic impact, unlocks reliable long-term revenue for the city, and maximizes the investment in the convention center."

The proposed lease deal was a response to the city’s request for proposals to lease the 2.5-acre site at the corner of 17th Street and Convention Center Drive. Miami Beach Connect was the only respondent.

There would be a large, resort-style pool deck atop a 53-foot-tall pedestal. The hotel would also have an 8,000-square-foot spa, 5,000-square-foot fitness center, and ballrooms. It would have 320 valet-only parking spaces.

Arquitectonica designed the project, which the city requires to achieve Gold-level LEED certification for environmental sustainability.

The hotel would cost $348 million to $362 million to develop, according to Miami Beach Connect.

Miami Beach Connect pledged to fully fund the project without public dollars. The developer agreed to pay the city 2.5 percent of gross revenue from all components except food and beverage service, which would pay 1.25 percent. The payment would be about $2.6 million by the fifth year of the deal. Miami Beach Connect agreed to make it a union hotel.

Pembroke Pines officials will consider the redevelopment of the former City Hall building by Terra.

August 8, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

The rezoning item will go before the city’s Planning and Zoning Board. The specific site plan and renderings have yet to be filed.

This would be the fourth phase of Miami-based Terra's developments within the Pines City Center project, along Pines Boulevard and Palm Avenue. The city assembled 146.4 acres there, built a new civic center to serve as City Hall and cultural/event space, and sold the rest of the land to multiple developers, including Terra.

So far, Terra has completed the first phase of its retail center there, including Publix Super Market, Outback Steakhouse, Hobby Lobby and Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant. The second phase of the retail center and 385 apartments are currently under construction.

Now that the city has vacated its former City Hall building at 10100 Pines Blvd., city officials have moved to include that 15-acre parcel into the Pines City Center site and its mixed-use zoning category. That property is under contract to Terra, according to city documents.

Terra President David Martin said he plans to build a hotel with 120 to 150 rooms, plus a moderate amount of retail space, on the property. The site plan hasn’t been finalized as the developer, along with Beame Architectural Partnership, is working on how best to situate the hotel and parking spaces on the site, Martin said. He isn’t ready to announce the hotel brand yet.

“This will be a nice entry to the intersection of Palm Avenue and Pines Boulevard that will identify Pines City Center at that intersection,” Martin said.

The main entrance to Pines City Center is currently further west on Pines Boulevard, and the the vacant office building is at the southwest corner of the busy intersection.

There are no major hotels in Pembroke Pines between University Drive and Flamingo Road, although there are some hotels further west along Interstate 75.

Martin said corporate travel and health care would be the main demand drivers for the new hotel. Memorial Hospital West in Pembroke Pines is one of the busiest hospitals in Broward County.

Being part of Pines City Center would also make the new hotel attractive to guests, Martin said.

“Pines City Center is a good place for people to go to restaurants and shop and experience something in a walkable environment, and also have access to the cultural center the city built,” Martin said.


PepsiCo sells Miami-Dade site to Terra, Terranova for $40M

January 2, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell
PepsiCo sold its Miami-Dade County offices and bottling plant for $40.27 million to a joint venture between local developers Terra and Terranova Corp.

The Business Journal reported in July that the beverage company (NYSE: PEP) listed the 23.7-acre site at 7777 N.W. 41st St. in Doral for sale. The listing agents were NAI Global’s Jay Olshonsky, Clifford Moskowitz and Kimberly Kocur, plus NAI Miami’s Gabriel Garcia-Menocal and Lucia Custer.

Terra and Terranova Corp. announced that they had formed 7777 Investment LLC to acquire the property from PepsiCo and sign a lease with the beverage company. While the developers didn’t disclose the length of the lease, they indicated it was not long term, and they plan to redevelop the property for up to 500,000 square feet of commercial space.

“The PepsiCo site offers us a range of options, including pursuing a commercial development strategy on a highly visible, easily accessible property in one of the region’s most in-demand submarkets,” Terra co-founder and President David Martin said. “In addition to the drivers fueling commercial activity in Doral, we have the benefit of a blue-chip tenant like PepsiCo remaining in place.”

Doral officials would be required to approve commercial redevelopment of the PepsiCo. The property currently has a 232,919-square-foot bottling plant from 1964.

The property is just east of Downtown Doral and CityPlace Doral, two mixed-use centers that were created in recent years. It’s just off the Palmetto Expressway/State Road 826, one of the busiest highways in Miami-Dade. Miami International Airport is about 2 miles away.

“A development site of this size and with such a desirable location offers a high degree of long-term flexibility,” Terranova founder and Chairman Stephen Bittel said. “The PepsiCo property could one day be home to a master-planned mixed-use project, an institutional-grade distribution center or even a corporate headquarters.”


Terra, AvalonBay acquire redevelopment project in Doral

May 22, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

Terra and AvalonBay Communities acquired the commercial and apartment portions, respectively, of a redevelopment project in Doral.

The property at 3900 N.W. 79th Ave. and 7905 N.W. 36th Street (Doral Boulevard) currently has 136,892 square feet of offices built in 1972 and a 4,322-square-foot restaurant built in 1981. All of that would be demolished for a mixed-use project called the Atrium at Doral that was recently approved by the city.

Atrium Office Park LLC, managed by Armando Guerra in Coral Gables, sold 4.57 acres for $20 million to Avalon Doral LLC, an affiliate of Arlington, Virginia-based AvalonBay Communities (NYSE: AVB). The buyer intends to build 350 apartments in eight stories.

At the same time, Guerra’s Atrium Office Park and Doral Entrance LLC sold 5.23 acres for a combined $13.5 million to Doral Atrium Retail Investments, an affiliate of Miami-based Terra. The buyer intends to build 90,000 square feet of retail.

Terra President David Martin said he expects to begin construction this summer and complete the retail project in 2020.

“The Atrium at Doral will be Terra’s newest lifestyle-driven retail destination in Doral, which is widely viewed as one of Florida’s strongest retail markets because of its growing population, diverse workforce, and high barriers to new development," Martin said. "Once completed, the Atrium at Doral will meet rising demand among retailers looking for well-located space in Doral that is within close proximity to residential options.”

The Atrium at Doral site has another 200,000 square feet of commercial space or 150 hotel rooms permitted. Those development rights were divided evenly between Terra and AvalonBay, according to county records.

The architect of the residential portion was Stantic. Beame Architectural Partnership designed the commercial portion.

Guerra’s companies acquired the property for a combined $10.7 million in 2000 and 2001. He divested of them for $33.5 million.

Kaufman Rossin signs lease for new headquarters

September 25, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

Accounting, consulting firm to relocate nearly 300 employees

By Brian Bandell

Accounting and consulting firm Kaufman Rossin will move its headquarters into the new Mary Street office building in Coconut Grove, the company and developer Terra announced.

Kaufman Rossin is currently at 2699 S. Bayshore Drive in Coconut Grove, its home building since 1974. It leased 64,666 square feet in the building under construction at 2850 Oak Ave., which also runs along Mary Street. That will be a 10,000-square-foot expansion for Kaufman Rossin.

The company expects to move nearly 300 employees into the Mary Street building starting June 2020.

“The move to this expanded, innovative space represents new beginnings for Kaufman Rossin while keeping us true to our roots in Coconut Grove,” Kaufman Rossin CEO Blain Heckaman said. “It’s important not only for the growth of our firm, but also for our employees who are the heart of our award-winning corporate culture, and for our clients located in South Florida and beyond. This project is also significant for us on a client relationship level, as Terra has been a firm client for many years.”

Kaufman Russin was ranked the No. 5 Accounting Firm by number of CPAs in the Business Journal’s Book of Lists.

When combined with Terra’s plan to occupy 13,174 square feet of the building that it’s co-developing with Mayfair Advisors, Mary Street’s office space is fully leased.

There will also be 18,000 square feet of retail space. Tenants will include Jaguar Therapeutic, OXXO Cleaners, Elia restaurant, the Workout Spot and a dentist.

Mary Street was designed by Touzet Studio.

“Our team launched Mary Street to complete the vision of a true live-work-play environment in Coconut Grove,” said David Martin, president and co-founder of Terra. “We always believed adding density and improving neighborhood connectivity would appeal to existing Coconut Grove companies, so bringing in Kaufman Rossin as our anchor office tenant is an ideal match.

Tom Capocefalo with Savillis Study represented Kaufman Rossin in the lease deal while Chris Dekker with Mayfair Real Estate Advisors represented the developer.

Martin and Soffer file bid for Miami Beach Convention Center hotel

June 15, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

A partnership between developers David Martin and Jackie Soffer filed a bid to build a hotel at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

June 14 was the deadline for responses to the city’s request for proposals (RFP) for the convention center hotel, a project that’s been in the works for about a decade to allow for larger conventions in the city. The plan is to capitalize on the newly expanded convention center and allow guests to stay on site.

Miami Beach Connect, led by Martin and Soffer, was the only bidder.

The city’s evaluation committee will hear a presentation from the group at 9:30 a.m. on June 21. It would require city commission approval to go before voters in November.

More details about the proposal will be released at the meeting. However, the RFP said the hotel must have between 550 and 800 rooms. The maximum height would be 185 feet.

Martin is the president of Miami-based Terra, one of South Florida’s largest developers of residential and commercial real estate.

Soffer is chair and CEO of Aventura-based Turnberry Associates, which owns the Aventura Mall, the Turnberry Isle Resort, and the Fontainebleau Miami Beach. She’s also built hotels around the country.

“The team’s proposal connects the hotel and convention center with important civic, cultural and commercial components, introduces new community-oriented programming, enhances streetscapes, improves mobility, and innovates with next-generation resiliency and sustainability features,” Miami Beach Connect said in a statement.

Once completed, the Convention Center District will serve as a key economic engine, deliver reliable long-term revenue to the city, and connect several Miami Beach neighborhoods, Miami Beach Connect said.

Its team includes Arquitectonica as lead architect, Dacra for urban planning, Rockwell Group for interior design, Meyer Davis for restaurant design, Spinnaker Group for LEED certification, Coastal Tishman as general contractor, Thorntown Tomasetti as structural engineering, and Kimley-Horn as traffic engineer.

Soffer, Martin present plan for 800-room hotel at Miami Beach Convention Center

June 21, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

A team led by Jackie Soffer of Turnberry Associates and David Martin of Terra presented their plans for a Miami Beach Convention Center hotel to a city evaluation committee on Thursday, revealing details of their 800-room project.

The city issued a request for proposals (RFP) to build a hotel on the 2.5-acre site at the corner of 17th Street and Convention Center Drive through a lease with the city. The plan is to have a hotel to complement the convention center, which is currently undergoing renovation and expansion, to attract more major events.

Previous efforts to approve a convention center hotel in Miami Beach have failed, including one rejected by voters. Veteran local developers Soffer and Martin have a proposal for a building with lower height and a design they say emphasizes sustainability and mitigating traffic impacts on surrounding streets.

The committee recommended approval of the bid, which is expected to go before the city commission in July. If approved by the commission, the bid by Miami Beach Connect – the sole respondent to the RFP – would go before voters in November.

“Our community has invested a significant amount of money in cultural facilities,” Martin said. “Our job is to connect the district and to unlock its full potential, and to create better green space and better pedestrian walkability."

The hotel would cost $348 million to $362 million to develop, with 35 percent expected to come from developer equity and the rest from construction financing, said Aly-khan Merali, president and CFO of Turnberry. There would be no capital contribution from the city, which would provide the land.

Starting in the fifth year of the 99-year lease, the developer would pay the greater of 2.5 percent of gross operating revenue or $2 million. Merali said the projected annual lease payment, based on the hotel's expected revenue, would be $3.3 million. 

Including lease payments and taxes for real estate, sales and hotel beds, the city would receive about $10.2 million in annual revenue from the hotel, Merali said. There would also be about $4.1 million in permit fees upfront, he added.

The project would create 1,909 jobs during construction and 724 full-time jobs upon completion, the developers said.

The team has letters of support for the project from Hilton, Hyatt and Marriott, who would aggressively pursue becoming a brand for the new hotel, Merali said.

Under the proposal, to be finalized after negotiations with city staff, the sale of the hotel would trigger a payment to the city of the lesser of $2 million or 0.25 percent of the price. This payment could be triggered up to three times during the life of the 99-year lease.

Randy Weisburd, a member of the evaluation committee, said the city should negotiate the payment connected to the sale of the hotel carefully so it’s protected in case the developer sells it for a big profit.

“We know we can deliver the quality project you are looking for,” said Soffer, who previously built a convention center hotel in Nashville. “We intend on engaging the community and working with the city to deliver what you are looking to have."

Bernardo Fort-Brescia, founding principal of Miami-based Arquitectonica, walked the committee through the design of the 800-room hotel.

The hotel tower would rise 185 feet – almost 100 feet shorter than proposals from previous developers – and be set back from the street. The building’s pedestal would be about 53 feet tall, roughly the same height as the convention center. The ground floor of the building would have active uses such as retail along the sidewalks, including a Miami Beach Welcome Center.

The sidewalk would be elevated and set back 35 feet from the road to avoid sea-level rise and flooding, Fort-Brescia said. 

There would be a large, resort-style pool deck atop the pedestal featuring outdoor dining and gardens. The hotel would also have an 8,000-square-foot spa, 5,000-square-foot fitness center, and ballrooms.

Many of the panelists asked about the traffic impact of the project. It would have 320 valet-only parking spaces, Fort-Brescia said. There would be an internal L-shaped road from 17th Street to Convention Center Drive to allow for drop-offs, including dedicated spaces for buses and ride-sharing vehicles. 

Truck deliveries would be received on a new private street between the hotel and the Fillmore Miami Beach, said John McWilliams of Kimley-Horn, the team’s traffic engineer.

Soffer said the new hotel could reduce traffic during major events such as Art Basel. Attendees could stay on-site at the new hotel and walk, instead of staying at hotels elsewhere and taking a car to the event, she said.

The city required the hotel to achieve Gold-level LEED certification for environmental sustainability. Walter Meyer, the team’s sustainability consultant with Local Office Landscape & Urban Design, said it could easily exceed that. The roof of one hotel tower would have solar panels to keep the hotel functional during a power outage, he said. The second tower would have a “blue room” with a pond to retain stormwater for several days and alleviate flooding, Meyer said.

If the convention center hotel is approved by at least 60 percent of voters in November, it would probably break ground around the end of 2019, City Manager Jimmy Morales said.

Terra sells Publix-anchored center in Doral for $72M

January 15, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell

Terra sold the Publix-anchored Doral Commons shopping center for $71.56 million, turning a nice profit off a property that’s 95 percent leased.

Terra Doral Commons Retail, an affiliate of Miami-based Terra, sold the 140,000-square-foot shopping center at 7520 and 7550 N.W. 104th Ave. and 7570 N.W. 107th Ave. to Jamestown Doral Commons, an affiliate Atlanta-based commercial real estate firm Jamestown. The price equated to $511 per square foot.

Doral Commons was built on the 18.3-acre site in 2015. It’s near Terra’s Modern Doral home community, which Terra co-founder and President David P. Martin said is 95 percent sold.

This was the second shopping center that Terra built as the company has transitioned from a residential building to a diversified real estate developer, also building retail, office, industrial and self-storage.

“Doral has one of the largest employment areas in the county,” Martin said. “There are a lot of jobs and purchasing power. Doral has amazing demographics and household incomes.”

In addition to Publix, tenants in Doral Commons include TJ Maxx, Citibank, GNC, AT&T Wireless and McDonald’s.

Terra was represented in the deal by Mark Gilbert of Cushman & Wakefield.

“The Doral Commons sale coincides with a surge of retail leasing activity in Doral which is creating heightened demand among sophisticated investors such as Jamestown,” Gilbert said. “This is a case of Terra taking a forward-looking approach to acquiring a site, recognizing a void in the market, and creating value through execution and leasing.”

Meanwhile, Terra has more retail planned near the Doral Court office building, and Martin said he hopes to purchase an additional commercial development site in Doral later this year.

Terra reveals plan for 145,000-square-foot Miami-Dade shopping center

February 5, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell
Terra has filed plans to redevelop a property in Doral into a three-level shopping center.
The Miami-based developer would build the 145,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space at the southeast corner of Northwest 36th Street and Northwest 87th Avenue. The structure would be in the parking lot around the Doral Court office building at 8600 N.W. 36th St. Terra would reduce the size of the office building to 150,000 square feet from 210,000 square feet by demolishing an annex building.

Terra acquired the 3.86-acre parking lot for $12.5 million from Banyan Street, which still owns the office building.
David Martin, president and co-founder of Terra, said it’s a great location for retail and restaurants because both cross streets carry over 50,000 cars a day. It’s near the center of Doral, which has many workplaces and a rapidly growing population, he said.

“We are making it more urbanistic, with large sidewalks and a strong food and beverage component,” Martin said. “We will have outdoor cafes and an interesting landscape design."

Designed by Touzet Studio and Beame Architectural Partnership, Doral Square would have five retail and restaurant buildings, plus an interior parking garage.

Martin said he envisions a fitness center on the third floor, and he’d also like to attract a home furnishings store and service-oriented retail. The parking garage would lead directly into the second- and third-floor shops, he said.

The retail spaces would range from 2,000 to 10,000 square feet on the first floor, and be as large as 30,000 square feet on the upper floors, Martin said.

“With the way technology and companies like Amazon and others are innovating with online purchasing, we want more resilient tenants,” Martin said. “Even retailers that have been large tenants are taking smaller spaces."

There would be renovations to the remaining office building.
Attorney Tracy Slavens represents Terra in the application. The city will hold a public zoning workshop on the Doral Square plans Feb. 7, but no votes for approval have been scheduled yet.
Martin said he’d like to break ground in late 2018 or early 2019.


Terra begins construction of Broward shopping center, names new restaurants

October 31, 2018   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell
Terra has named a host of tenants for its Pines City Center shopping plaza as it builds the second phase of the project.
Located on the north side of Pines Boulevard at Palm Avenue in Pembroke Pines, the retail center will total 300,000 square feet. Miami-based Terra has already completed about half of that in the first phase, which includes Publix Super Market, West Marine, BurgerFi, Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant and Outback Steakhouse.
Hobby Lobby was previously confirmed as the largest tenant for the second phase, which should be completed in summer 2019. Terra obtained construction financing for the project in late 2017.
With the entire shopping center 95 percent preleased, Terra said other tenants in the second phase will include:
Walk-On’s Bistreaux & Bar (8,151 square feet). The Louisiana-based sports bar chain is co-owned by New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, the NFL’s all-time leader in passing yards. This will be its first Florida location.

Chuy's Tex Mex (7,585 square feet). This fast-casual chain features Mexican dishes. It has three locations in Miami-Dade County, and this would be its first restaurant in Broward County.
McAlister’s Deli (3,427 square feet). This fast-casual American-style restaurant has over 400 locations.

Paradise Grills (3,035 square feet). The company manufactures and sells commercial barbecue grills, stainless steel appliances and outdoor kitchens.

Davvero Pasta (1,440 square feet). This is a new fast-casual restaurant concept featuring made-to-order pasta meals.
Courtelis Co. is the leasing broker for the project.
“Anchor tenants like Publix and Hobby Lobby, along with the right mix of food and beverage operators, are vital to creating a center that will become an everyday destination for Pembroke Pines’ fast-growing community,” Terra President David Martin said. “Between our first and second phases of Pines City Center, we are bringing in tenants that appeal to a cross-section of consumers, from residents in surrounding neighborhoods to tenants occupying space at nearby office developments.”
Terra is also building 387 apartments at Pines City Center. The city of Pembroke Pines has sold pieces of the Pines City Center site to multiple developers, and also completed a $60 million civic building with a new City Hall, a performing arts center and an art gallery there.
Terra is also under contract to acquire the site of Pembroke Pines’ former City Hall for another project.

Terra breaks ground on Mr. C Residences Coconut Grove condo

July 27, 2020   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Brian Bandell – Senior Reporter, South Florida Business Journal

Terra has broken ground on the Mr. C Residences Coconut Grove condo in Miami.

Few condos have broken ground in Miami this year due to an oversupply of inventory in the market and the Covid-19 pandemic hurting the economy, but Terra President David Martin said he's been pleased with the company's sales momentum. Since launching sales in January, the project has pre-sold 30 of its 100 condos.

The condos will average 1,800 square feet and range from two to four bedrooms. They are priced from the $800,000s to $5 million, Martin said.

Coconut Grove is one of the more expensive neighborhoods in Miami, valued for its quiet setting, nice parks and marina, and good schools. It gave Terra added confidence that it has conduced over 40 closings this year on Park Grove, a condo it co-developed with the Related Group. Mr. C Residences will rise next door.

Martin said the sales team has used a lot of virtual meetings, renderings and videos to sell the Mr. C condos. The buyers are younger, in their 40s, than the buyers at Park Grove, who were often in their 60s.

“This public health crisis has shown how important someone’s home is,” Martin said. 
The condos will be branded by Mr. C, a European hospitality brand co-founded by Ignazio Cipriani. It will manage the food, beverage, wellness, amenities, and resident services in the building.

There will also be 200 rental apartments in the second tower. The 20-story project is at 2655 S. Bayshore Drive.

The Mr. C condo was designed by Arquitectonica to resemble a sail. Meyers Davis is the interior designer collaborating with the Mr. C team.
 Amenities will include a pool deck with a bar, a fitness center, a signature cafe with in-home delivery,

spa treatment rooms, a steam room, a sauna, a kid’s room, a juice bar, a gourmet market, a billiards room, a game lounge, and a business room.

The project obtained a $185 million construction loan in 2019.

John Moriarty Associates is the general contractor. Construction should take two years, Martin said.

Terra is working with Douglas Elliman as the listing broker.

Read full article:


Corridors of Opportunity: From the fringes of the Everglades, a neighborhood grows

May 3, 2019   |   South Florida Business Journal

By Jeff Zbar

Doral has a history that belies its youth. As one of South Florida’s youngest cities, it’s also one of the fastest-growing municipalities in the state.

Once mostly known for its warehouses and industrial facilities, Doral has transformed into a fairly affluent, bustling community that now boasts a significant and growing residential base and big-name employers. CarnivalCorp., Perry Ellis International, World Fuel Services Corp., Univision and the U.S. Southern Command (SouthCom) call the city home.

In all, Doral is home to 775 businesses in the advanced industries sector, providing jobs for 11% of the city’s workforce. Part of the Miami Free Trade Zone – one of North America’s largest privately owned and operated general purpose foreign trade zones – trade and logistics providers serve Miami and Florida, as well as Latin America, Asia and Europe.

As Doral has exploded with new neighborhoods, so has the need for retail, dining and entertainment options, and lodging, including Trump National Doral Miami, the golf resort owned by the president’s family.

Growth has come with a distinct eye on residents’ civic and cultural needs. The city is home to the Doral Contemporary Art Museum. Its voters – who represent 88 nationalities – recently approved a $150 million referendum to build out the city’s parks. These amenities and location in the region serve residents and area employers alike.

“Doral is an ideal location for our company, with its easy access to downtown Miami and Fort Lauderdale, as well as the airport and ports,” said Roger Frizell, a senior executive with Carnival Corp. “It also features excellent restaurants and ample shopping, and the entire atmosphere of the city and its people is warm and welcoming.”

The county’s second-youngest city, Doral was named for real estate pioneers Doris and Alfred Kaskel. The couple invested about $49,000 to purchase 2,400 acres of swampland between Northwest 36th Street and Northwest 74th Street and from Northwest 79th Avenue to Northwest 117th Avenue. In 1962, they opened the Doral Country Club, along with a Miami Beach hotel. Guests were driven from the beach to the club’s three golf courses.

Within a year, the property held the first Doral Open Invitational, a PGA tour event. This “game breaker” development attracted “high rollers” and outsiders, said local historian Paul George, a professor with Miami Dade College.

About that same time, the Palmetto Expressway opened, followed by the Dolphin Expressway, bringing drivers and development.
“These transportation lines really set it up for the development to the west and north. As the county grew, the region grew immensely,” he said. “It’s gone crazy since, becoming an archetypal suburbia, with the exception of its great ethnic diversity. This place continues to evolve, and it’s pretty remarkable to see.”

All along the Palmetto Expressway, and later bordered to the west by Florida’s Turnpike, companies took note. The greater Airport West submarket attracted import/export providers who sought proximity to Miami International Airport just to the east. What’s more, PortMiami, the state’s largest container port, is just 15 miles away. Today, 250,000 cars on the Palmetto Expressway pass by daily.

Doral and the surrounding area began to take on the characteristics of an international trade hub. Yet, it retained its bedroom community appeal. To be sure, Cubans made their home in the area. But others from across the hemisphere, especially Colombians and Venezuelans, put their unique stamp on the market, George said.

Then, the Codinas arrived. Veteran entrepreneur and developer Armando Codina sensed opportunity in Doral. That is, after his first joint-venture development of the Beacon Centre office and logistics park in the 1980s. Though incorporated in 2003, the city lacked a cohesive center – a “downtown.”

Codina and his daughter, Codina Partners CEO Ana-Marie Codina Barlick, envisioned a walkable city center akin to what those in the suburbs often lacked. This even included a school as a centerpiece.

The Codinas acquired various parcels – including the Great White Course from Trump National Doral Miami – to assemble 250 acres that would become Downtown Doral. Once completed, the development will include scores of retailers and restaurants, 1 million square feet of Class A office space, 5,000 single-family and multifamily housing units, a government center and City Hall, and the high-rated Downtown Doral Charter Elementary School at its center.
Codina Partners is not alone.

Venerable developer The Related Group delivered CityPlace Doral. The mixed-use complex features 250,000 square feet of retail space, including more than 40 dining, shopping and entertainment destinations, as well as over 400 luxury residences.
Other developers also have taken note. Miami-based Terra Group is building four mixed-use projects in Doral. District 79 will serve the growing demand for Class A industrial space and community-oriented retail. Its residential enclave, Modern Doral/Doral Commons, will consist of 319 single-family luxury homes and about 150,000 square feet of retail space. Homes will be priced from $860,000 to $1.5 million.

When completed in 2020, lifestyle retail destination the Atrium at Doral will feature 50,000 square feet adjacent to a new rental community being developed by Trammell Crow. Terra’s three-level Doral Square shopping center will serve up 145,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space amid a strong urbanistic design.

“The commercial growth underway in Doral is one of the most exciting stories playing out in South Florida’s real estate landscape,” Terra co-founder and President David Martin said. “Rising demand for retail, office and industrial real estate is being fueled by a growing residential population, the city’s desirable lifestyle, and improving infrastructure and transit options.”

In some ways, Doral is just getting started, said Manuel Pila, the city’s economic developer. Some 30 hotels are planned over the next few years to serve tourists, business travelers, golfers and families. Though buildout will come, the city’s aspirations of achieving a healthy mix of targeted industries and residential growth make it a model city, said researchers with Florida International University’s Metropolitan Center, an urban policy think tank and solutions center.

“Doral has developed into a highly diversified economy, balancing manufacturing, advanced services, transshipment, corporate headquarters and unique merchant retail sectors,” researchers wrote in 2017. “In fact, its sector mix, combined with its high household incomes and wages, may be a model for Miami-Dade County.”

Doral has earned a platinum “smart city” designation from the World Council of City Data, putting it on par with Dubai, Amsterdam, London and Los Angeles. The goal is to build a “livable and sustainable” city aligned with the ICLEI Pilot for Climate Resilient Communities, as well as the U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement.

Its successful pursuit of targeted clusters have kept the city’s millage rate down and taxes low, while attracting high-paying jobs for an educated workforce, Pila said.

This has created a great opportunity to continue to be a leading, high-concentration area for advanced industry in South Florida, he added.

“The balance of all those attributes – commercial, industrial, residential, lifestyle, safety, education, great schools in a great business community – that’s a rare balance. That excites people,” Pila said.

Additionally, residents and business owners are attracted by the new commercial and entertainment areas that are now part of Doral, he added.

“People don’t have to leave Doral. They can get everything they want, except the beach.”

Terra signs Publix, Ross Dress for Less as anchor tenants at local developments

December 4, 2020   |   South Florida Business Journal

Real estate developer Terra secured leases from both Publix Super Markets and Ross Dress for Less for ongoing developments.

The Miami-based developer said its brokerage partner Courtelis Company has signed nearly 60,000 square feet in new retail leases for its tri-county projects over the last six months despite the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

These two anchor tenant signings make up a majority of that square footage.

Lakeland-based grocery store chain Publix agreed to occupy 23,168 square feet at 16000 Pines Market, a 135,000-square-foot mixed-use retail development still under construction in Pembroke Pines. Publix will anchor this development from Terra.

In addition to the Publix signing, Terra announced that Verizon Wireless (2,531 square feet) and Everglades Family Dental (1,660) signed pre-leases in the development. 16000 Pines Market is slated to open in 2021.

California-based Ross Dress for Less, which has nearly three dozen stores in South Florida, will occupy 24,147 square feet within Doral Square, also is slated to open in 2021. Doral Square is a 150,000-square-foot retail center coming to the southeast corner of Doral Boulevard and 87th Avenue in Doral.

Ross will join previously announced anchor tenant Marshall's.

However, a spokesperson for Terra said gym chain 24-Hour Fitness, which had previously signed on to occupy 37,000 square feet within Doral Square, is to be replaced by another gym tenant. This comes after 24-Hour Fitness filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in June.

In addition to Ross, Terra announced that fast-casual restaurant chain Panda Express will occupy 2,200 square feet at Doral Square.

“We anticipate a continued need for lifestyle-centered developments that will serve at the pulse of South Florida’s neighborhoods featuring restaurants and retailers, as well as essential services such as grocers and local businesses that cater to the everyday needs of surrounding residents," Terra CEO David Martin said in a statement.

Rod Castan, president of leasing and management at Miami-based Courtelis Company, is overseeing leasing for Terra’s portfolio of retail developments, including 16000 Pines Market and Doral Square.





SFBJ | 2021 Power Leaders

January 29, 2021   |   South Florida Business Journal





Martin heads an integrated real estate development firm with projects valued at more than $10 billion. He focuses on improving lives and enhancing neighborhoods through innovative design and intelligent planning.


Birthplace: Gainesville

Education: MBA, University of Florida

Worst personal habit: Working too hard

One succesful habit: Practicing humility

Don't interrupt me when I'm: Spending time with my family

Favorite smartphone app: Microsoft Teams

Favorite TV network: CNBC, which is always on in my office

Three dinner guests: Sam Zell, Anthony Bourdain, Donald Bren

Lesson from the pandemic: How technology and automation will continue to change our lives, providing for flexibility and adaptability

Lesson from my mom: Work tirelessly for what you believe in