The Real Deal Miami

South Beach ACE waits for city to proceed after winning Miami Beach Convention Center bid

Total project cost "yet to be finalized," attorney says
By Emily Schmall | July 18, 2013 01:00PM

Albert Dotson

Albert Dotson

South Beach ACE, the developer-architect team led by Dan Tishman and Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, is cooling its heels after winning the lucrative bid to redesign a 52-acre swath of Miami Beach.

Koolhaas’s futuristic design prevailed over the public square-centered vision of his onetime employee, Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, in a commission vote late Wednesday. Ingels had described the contest as “oedipal,” according to Architectural Record.

The South Beach won the bid, estimating the total cost at $1.1 billion. The city has pledged financing of the public component, including the convention center, through a hotel bed tax already approved by voters.

Al Dotson, a partner at Miami-based Blitzin Sumberg who represents South Beach ACE, told The Real Deal what commissioners approved was a master plan, with the fine points yet to be ironed out.

“The cost to taxpayers should not exceed $600 million,” Dotson said, adding that “the actual cost remains to be finalized.”

The city will take up on Friday the language of a ballot to go out as a public referendum Nov. 5 that will define some of the project’s parameters.

“We’ve got a call into the city to see how they’d like to proceed,” Dotson said.

Dotson formed part of last night’s crowd at Miami Beach City Hall as commissioners decided the winner of a heated and often contentious bid to revamp the city’s convention center.