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Calta Plans $47M In Allapattah Dev Site Purchases For Workforce Housing

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The Calta Group is targeting workforce-priced housing in Miami’s Allapattah neighborhood.

The Coral Gables-based firm plans roughly $47.2 million in purchases for development sites in Allapattah, where it wants to build multifamily projects with workforce units in two parts of the neighborhood, company co-founder Gaetano Caltagirone told The Real Deal.

For the first two phases, Calta is homing in on an Allapattah area that’s north of the completed River Landing Shops & Residences mixed-use complex.

Last week, Calta advanced its plan, paying $10 million for the first chunk of its phase one assemblage. The firm bought five adjacent lots at 1415, 1433, 1435 and 1453 Northwest 13th Terrace, as well as at 1410 Northwest 14th Street. Calta will complete this assemblage with a $7.2 million purchase of the adjacent lot at 1469 Northwest 13th Terrace, according to Caltagirone. That deal, expected to close in late January, would give Calta an acre of developable land for phase one of the project on the southwest corner of Northwest 14th Street and Northwest 13th Terrace.

Records show an entity led by a trust tied to members of the Enis family sold the five lots, which consist of two vacant sites, a one-story office building and a pair of low-rise apartment buildings with eight units combined.

The lot at 1469 Northwest 13th Terrace is owned by an entity led by Arturo Siso, managing partner at Miami-based real estate private equity firm Ailsa Capital, according to records. The site now has a seven-story office building.

For phase two, Calta plans to pay another $10 million for a pair of lots that are near the phase one assemblage. The deal is expected to close in March.

Phases one and two would consist of a pair of mid-rise buildings with mixed-income apartments, including workforce-priced units, as well as offices and retail, Caltagirone said. He declined to provide specifics on the unit count, building heights and amount of commercial space.

Farther north in Allapattah, Calta is planning phases three and four of its project near Juan Pablo Duarte Park. The firm expects to close on $20 million in development site purchases near Northwest 28th Street in January. Caltagirone also declined to identify the specific parcels and project details, though he allowed that this project would be a mid-rise multifamily development.

South Florida’s multifamily market has left many longtime locals priced out, after an influx of out-of-state residents pushed up rents to unprecedented levels.

Calta’s project would address the need for more below-market apartments, especially for students and employees at the Civic Center and Health District areas that are near Allapattah, said Caltagirone, who leads the firm with his brother, Ignazio Caltagirone.

 

Source:  The Real Deal

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Miami May Be Closer To Banning Special Area Plans

In Miami, property owners who control more than 9 acres of land can apply for a wide array of zoning changes. They’re called Special Area Plans, or SAPs, and the legislation has allowed for massive, planned projects like Brickell City Centre, River Landing Shops & Residences, the redevelopment of the Miami Design District, and the expansion of the Miami Jewish Home. It has also allowed for future mega-projects like the Magic City Innovation District in Little Haiti, Miami Produce Center in Allapattah, and Mana Wynwood.

On Jan. 15, the city of Miami’s Planning, Zoning and Appeals Board will discuss proposed legislation that could do away with SAPs altogether.

The board voted Wednesday to discuss a rule at its Jan. 15 meeting that would recommend that the city remove SAPs from the Miami 21 zoning code. In the 8 to 1 vote, board member Chris Collins was the lone dissenter.

The ultimate decision on whether to keep SAPs rests with the Miami City Commission. But even if the resolution isn’t approved, board members hope that it will tell elected leaders that SAPs are not beneficial to Miami’s existing neighborhoods and residents.

“I don’t want to send them a weak message,” said the resolution’s proposer, board member Alex Dominguez. “Either get rid of the damn thing … or let us move on.”

Several residents and community activists said SAPs are threatening neighborhoods, clogging roads with additional traffic, and speeding up gentrification. At the very least, community activists want a moratorium on future SAPs until regulations are put in place that govern development and require that affordable housing be offered in exchange for zoning.

“When I sell my home, I will have to leave because I will not be able to afford to live here,” said Jordan Levin, who lives in a house in Buena Vista East that she bought 20 years ago. “Please put a moratorium on these things. They’re the Godzillas of development. Development should not just be for the developers. Development should be for the city.”

Sue Trone, the city’s chief of community planning, argued that SAPs can help parts of Miami move away from the “segregated” uses advocated in the city’s 1959 comprehensive plan into a more mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly environment. And while reforms are needed, Trone argued that SAPs can “do a lot of good for the city.” Land use attorney Neisen Kasdin also begged the board not to “throw the baby out with the bath water” and to instead pursue reforms.

Dominguez, though, said it was best if the city rid itself of SAPs as soon as possible.

“Time is our biggest enemy. The more time we spend kicking things down the road and having meetings, the more developers are going to develop [SAPs] and we’ll have more traffic and we’ll see more people getting displaced,” he said.

Board member Melody Torrens said stopping future SAPs is “starting to make a lot of sense.” Still, she said the commission might not accept the idea, and while reforms are being debated, developers will continue to push SAPs. “If we’re not going to stop them completely, then we definitely need a moratorium while we go through [the legislation],” Torrens said.

Board chairman Charles Garavaglia agreed with Dominguez that passing a rule ending SAPs would make a stronger impact with politicians.

“I just think we should stop SAPs and send that message,” Garavaglia said, “and, ultimately, the commission will do what they want.”

 

Source:  The Real Deal

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