Michael Shvo scored a key approval for his proposed office and residential project on the former Epicure Gourmet Market & Café site on Miami Beach’s Alton Road. The city planning board voted 7-0 on Tuesday in favor of the six-story development that would consist of roughly 170,000 square feet of offices on levels four to
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The city planning board voted 7-0 on Tuesday in favor of the six-story development that would consist of roughly 170,000 square feet of offices on levels four to six, and five apartments on the third level on the northwest corner of Alton and Lincoln roads. Designed by Foster + Partners and Kobi Karp, the project would include nearly 12,000 square feet of retail and 5,000 square feet of restaurant space on the ground floor. The development is called The Alton.
Although Shvo representatives previously told The Real Deal the residential units would be condos, developer attorney Alfredo Gonzalez told the board on Tuesday the units would be apartments at market-rate rents. Units would range from 1,200 square feet to 1,500 square feet.
Despite granting preliminary approval on Tuesday, some planning board members raised concerns over the safety of a planned driveway on West Avenue, a mechanical garage and the uses of the seventh-level rooftop space.
Scrutiny over the driveway was partly due to issues board members and a resident cited with the existing West Avenue driveway for Trader Joe’s, which is immediately north of the development site. As cars exit the driveway, they have to cross over a bicycle lane and a pedestrian walkway, with views somewhat obstructed by the garage wall. Board members expressed concern about the new project driveway potentially creating a similar situation.
Gonzalez countered that The Alton actually would reduce traffic by roughly 1,800 daily trips because it would be primarily offices. Under the site’s zoning, an existing retail building, which used to be Epicure Gourmet Market & Café, could reopen as a shopping center, which would result in more traffic than an office project, Gonzalez said. Also, another entrance and exit in the alley between Alton Road and West Avenue would absorb about 20 percent of the project’s traffic, he said.
The garage, which would be on levels two and three, would include mechanical parking with 96 spaces. Gonzalez alleviated board member Gayle Durham’s concern that mechanical parking would be out of order during power outages by saying that the project would include a backup generator.
Shvo, in partnership with Deutsche Finance America, bought The Alton development site for $39.3 million last year. It consists of the lots at 1656, 1664, 1676 and 1680 Alton Road, and 1677 West Avenue.
The Alton is part of Shvo’s wager on Miami Beach’s condo and office market. His two other office plans in the city are a redevelopment of the 13-story office building known for its clock display at 407 Lincoln Road, and a six-story building at 1665-1667 Washington Avenue.
On the condo front, Shvo is revamping the Raleigh, South Seas and Richmond hotels at 1751, 1757 and 1775 Collins Avenue and constructing a 60-key hotel and a 42-unit condo tower on the site. Rosewood Hotels & Resorts will manage the hotel and brand the residential building.
Michael Shvo moves forward with $200M Norman Foster-designed office development in Miami Beach
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