Demolition permit denied for Bay Harbor Continental

Renderings of the proposed project to replace the Bay Harbor Continental
Renderings of the proposed project to replace the Bay Harbor Continental

After three different votes at a contentious hearing, the Miami-Dade Historic Preservation Board on Wednesday rejected the demolition of the Bay Harbor Continental, a cooperative apartment building with 35 units in Bay Harbor Islands.   

The Preservation Board granted historic designation to the building last month. However, 86 percent of the co-op residents had voted earlier to approve the sale of the building to P3 Investments, and they and representatives of the developer said it would take $5 million to $8 million to bring the building up to current code requirements.

Michael Hartman, vice-president of the coop said most residents are on fixed incomes and need the money from the sale. Most would be unable to afford the special assessments to fix deteriorating balconies, windows and roof areas, he said.

But a number of residents expressed strong opposition to the proposed demolition of the building that many have lived in for years. Thirteen of the 35 owners in the co-op opposed the sale.

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P3 is appealing the historic designation to the Miami Dade County Commission, which on Tuesday approved an appeal overturn the historic designation of Seaside Terrace Condominium in Surfside. That appeal is expected to be heard by the commission in June.

P3 has also filed a request to demolish the building. The company wants to replace the Bay Harbor Continental with a seven-story Pininfarina designed residential project containing 28 units.

The new project is just one of 24 new condo developments announced in Bay Harbor Islands, a once-sleepy community of low-rise residential apartment complexes and single family homes that is now at the center of a residential construction boom.