The Real Deal Miami

Co-working space planned for one of Wynwood’s oldest buildings

$6.6M deal is well below the $17M asking price

May 25, 2016 12:00PM
By Katherine Kallergis

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A photo from 1925 and a rendering of the proposed redevelopment

A photo from 1925 and a rendering of the proposed redevelopment

Updated, 6:25 p.m., May 26: A MiMo developer has purchased one of Wynwood’s oldest buildings with plans to repurpose the former car manufacturing facility into a co-working space for creatives.

The $6.6 million deal is well below the original $17 million list price, which was later dropped to $8.5 million.

Alex Karakhanian, an active developer and property owner in the MiMo District, bought the roughly 60,000-square-foot building at 1900 Northeast Miami Court, records show.

Karakhanian said that while his offer wasn’t the highest, the seller was looking to offload the property quickly and preferred his terms.

Transwestern’s Managing Director John Bell represented the seller, Aspira Properties. Aspira, which operates a school in the warehouse, put the property on the market as a development opportunity last year. Karakhanian said the school will move out in about 45 days to a new location nearby.

The warehouse sits on a 1-acre corner lot and was used in the early 1900s as the final assembly point for cars manufacturing. It includes a vacant parking lot and 19,500 square feet of rooftop space. The property has the potential to be developed into an eight-story, 161,853-square-foot building, or a 12-story, 270,000-square-foot project if the owner buys into the public benefits program, as per Miami 21 zoning code.

That means it sold for $30 per potential buildable square foot, or $24 if public benefits are included.

If all goes according to plan, Karakhanian will turn the building, which is being marketed as Lndmrk, around in about a year. He said it could be leased to a single tenant who would then lease smaller spaces, or partition the space himself and lease smaller offices to artists, startups and other creative-type tenants. Asking rent for a large tenant is in the mid-$20 range and in the $30s triple net if he breaks three-story building up himself.

Nearby co-working spaces include the Lab Miami in Wynwood, Büro in Midtown, and MADE at the Citadel in Little Haiti.

“The idea was to attract creative tenants maybe unable to pay Wynwood rents,” he told The Real Deal. Asking rents in Wynwood have topped $120 triple net, Karakhanian said. Metro 1 Commercial and Whitehall Realty Advisors will handle leasing.

Property records show Aspira Properties paid $3.4 million for the building in 2011. It was built between 1923 and 1926.

Correction: An earlier version of this story identified the listing price as $17 million. While it was originally on the market for $17 million, the price was dropped to $8.5 million.