The Real Deal Miami

Suit filed against city over Skyrise Miami funding

Miami-Dade agreed to give developer Berkowitz $9M in subsidies

February 06, 2015 10:30AM

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A rendering of SkyRise Miami

A rendering of SkyRise Miami

School board member Raquel Regalado and billionaire Norman Braman have filed a lawsuit against the city of Miami to prevent state funding of SkyRise Miami.

Regalado and Braman argued in the suit that SkyRise was proposed as a privately funded project in the August referendum that approved the development. Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado is Raquel’s father.

Miami-Dade agreed to give the developer $9 million in subsidies after the vote, which the plaintiffs said violated the terms of the referendum, according to published reports.

SkyRise developer Jeffrey Berkowitz said the subsidy is intended for infrastructure improvements, like parking and roadwork, while the tower itself will be privately funded, the Miami Herald reported.

Berkowitz is seeking $270 million from foreign investors to help subsidize the 1,000-foot-tall observation tower. SkyRise is an approved EB-5 project, meaning investors abroad are given green cards if they create 10 domestic jobs and contribute at least $500,000 to the project.  [Miami Herald] — Sean Stewart-Muniz