Paseo de la Riviera in Coral Gables aims to redefine area

Miami /
Sep.September 14, 2015 09:45 AM

Developer Brent Reynolds wants to activate an area of south Coral Gables and replace the existing Holiday Inn with a hotel, residential tower and an open-air “paseo” but before that happens, Coral Gables has to approve plans for Paseo de la Riviera.

At the August planning and zoning board meeting, residents spoke in support and against the $172 million project. The board will vote on the 2.66-acre mixed-use development on Wednesday. Reynolds, of NP International, told The Real Deal that he’s planning to complete the approval process with the city in October, and begin construction by next June.

Paseo’s plans call for a 10-story, 252-key hotel and an eight-story, 224-unit residential building with 838 parking spaces that will replace the 155-room Holiday Inn. If approved, the project will also include 14,853 square feet of retail and 4,364 square feet of restaurant space, both on the ground floor.

The development has faced opposition from neighbors over traffic concerns. “There are still people concerned about the project,” Reynolds said. “But at the same time, we have a number of supporters. At the end of the day, we’re going to be your neighbor.”

Plans for the development, at 1350 South Dixie Highway, are centered around connecting the residential neighborhood of single-family homes, which backs up to the project, to its 1,100 feet of linear walkways, green space, hotel and other amenities without negatively impacting traffic, Reynolds said. The walkway will span 352 feet in length and up to 72 feet in width.

The site is across the street from the planned Underline linear park, which runs underneath the Metrorail, as well as the University of Miami, the latter of which the existing Holiday Inn services. Reynolds plans to capitalize on alternative means of transportation in a region dependent on cars.

It’s also in front of Jaycee Park. “There really was no social component in the neighborhood besides the park,” he said.

Reynolds said his firm looks for projects that have high barriers to entry and the “canvas of longterm sustainability.” The lack of product and “lack of anything identifying [that part of] Coral Gables” was partially what drew him to the site.

NP International will close on the property in November, a spokesperson told TRD. NP International would not disclose a purchase price.

Coral Gables architect Jorge L. Hernandez, along with international firm Gensler, is designing the project, which is set on the deepest rectangular commercial property in Coral Gables, Hernandez told TRD.

The Mediterranean-style development will include six detailed facades, naturally shaded areas and internalized loading. “Wherever you are, you’ll see what we like to call the front of the building,” Hernandez said.

Since NP International began the process, the firm has modified its plans to include a lowered height, as well as moved the driveway to inside the complex. The developer said the neighborhood traffic protection plan removes all outflow traffic away from nearby residents with a hotel drop-off on Cabellero Boulevard/Hardee Road, which is the western border of Paseo.

Reynolds would not disclose the hotel brand, but said that “we’ll have a brand and quality that will be most welcome by the neighborhood, the university and the community.”

The residential component will be apartments, an area in which NP International has experience. “At the end of the day, if you did condos it would turn into an apartment building,” Reynolds said. “Management controls the outcome.”


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