The Real Deal Miami

Historic designation looms for Met Square

Preservation officer concludes downtown site meets criteria after recent findings
March 04, 2014 11:15AM

Royal Palm Hotel

Royal Palm Hotel

Miami’s preservation officer has concluded the Met Square site in downtown Miami meets the criteria for a historic designation after remains of a 2,000-year-old Tequesta Indian Village and Henry Flagler’s Royal Palm Hotel were found there.

The city’s historic preservation board is expected to use the officer’s findings as a springboard for a full designation study when it meets today, the Miami Herald reported. Met Square developer MDM Group plans to revise the design of its hotel and entertainment complex to preserve some of the site while it challenges the potential historic designation. A prior proposal to carve out a portion of the Tequesta and Royal Palm remnants and display them in a nearby plaza was rejected by city commissioners last month.

MDM has zoning and development approvals to build a movie theater, restaurants and 34-story hotel on the site. But the city has not given MDM a final building permit. [Miami Herald]Eric Kalis