Times are changing in Miami. Just 2 years ago, living in Miami required a car and was a pure drivers' city. Now though, the Downtown corridor is filling in fast like Manhattan. Formerly dirt plots now feature residential and retail and matched with the advancement of ride-sharing platforms such as Uber and Lyft, Miami is now a city you can live without a car. As developers work with the city to cut back on parking to build more units, there is now a push to appeal to the non-car owning (or leasing) renter (or buyer).
Leading the initiative are rental community masterminds Melo Group. Melo Group just completed the public transit-oriented Square Station, located at 1424 Northeast Miami Place in the heart of Downtown Miami’s Arts & Entertainment District. Renters who choose to give up their complimentary parking spot will receive a $100 discount off their monthly rent for the entirety of their lease for a credit of $1,200 per year. Square Station features an outdoor plaza connecting it to the adjacent Miami-Dade Metromover School Board Station.
“With Miami becoming more urban, we wanted to reward our residents who use alternative forms of transportation and encourage people to ditch their cars,” said Carlos Melo, principal of the Melo Group. “Square Station’s ground-floor retail will also help to create walkable sense of community, while the project’s transit-friendly location – with convenient access to the Metromover, Metrorail and Miami Trolley – will promote the everyday use of public transit and reduce traffic congestion during the workweek.”
Square Station features two 34-story towers with 710 market-rate rental apartments catering to an influx of young middle-class urbanites seeking walkable, urban lifestyles where they can live, work and play. The transit-oriented development also includes 15,000 SF of street-level retail and restaurants. Apartments range from one- to three-bedrooms measuring between 900 SF and 1,500 SF, with monthly rental rates starting at approximately $1,650 for one-bedroom units; $1,950 for two-bedroom units; and $2,500 for three-bedroom units. Units feature granite countertops, Samsung® stainless steel appliances, laminated wood floors, porcelain tile, and full-size washers and dryers. Large balconies showcase panoramic views of Biscayne Bay and the Miami skyline. Building amenities include a resort-style swimming pool and pool deck, Jacuzzi, fully equipped fitness center, valet service, covered garage parking, security-controlled remote access and a social room.
According to a recent demographic analysis of Greater Downtown Miami by the Miami Downtown Development Authority (DDA), Downtown Miami’s residential population has increased by nearly 40% since 2010 to more than 92,000 residents. Young working professionals comprise the majority of the residential population, with about 41,000 residents falling between the ages of 25 and 44, up 86% since 2010.
Square Station’s completion marks the first phase of Melo Group’s larger three-phase development plan to bring nearly 2,000 transit-oriented rental units to the Arts & Entertainment District area of Downtown Miami. Next door, the firm recently broke ground on Art Plaza, two 34-story towers with 667 apartments at 58 Northeast 14th Street. Plans for Miami Plaza, an adjacent third phase at 1502 Northeast Miami Place, are to include a 36-story tower with 437 rental units and approximately 7,000 SF of retail space. The developing neighborhood also includes previously completed Melo Group’s projects including Melody Tower, a 36-story mixed-use residential building which opened in 2016 at 245 Northeast 14th Street. Melody Tower offers 497 rental apartments with 8,500 SF of ground-floor retail and restaurant space with a landscaped plaza with public art.