The Real Deal Miami

MDM Group pays $45M for Miami Worldcenter hotel site in Overtown

1,700-room hotel and 600,000 sf convention center slated to open in 2020

Rendering of the project and a street view of the land. Inset: Miami Worldcenter developer Nitin Motwani and MDM Group principal Ricardo Glas

MDM Group has closed on the $45 million purchase of its Miami Worldcenter hotel and expo development site in Overtown.

The developer was under contract to buy the 5-acre site at 700 North Miami Avenue from Worldcenter developer Nitin Motwani. Old Arena LLC, led by Motwani, sold the former Miami Arena site. Records show the LLC paid $35 million for the property in 2012. The latest sale breaks down to $207 per square foot of land.

MDM will build the Marriott Marquis Miami Worldcenter Hotel & Expo Center in two phases, starting with 1,100 hotel rooms and a 600,000-square-foot conference and expo center, and then with a second 600-room hotel tower.

MDM, which is also developing the $1 billion Metropolitan Miami project farther south in downtown Miami, plans to break ground on the convention center hotel during the third quarter of this year, spokesperson Javier Fernandez told The Real Deal. Fernandez, a partner at Holland & Knight, worked on a key subsidy agreement for MDM for about two years before it was finalized in May.

The next step is getting the county and city to sign off on amendments to the CRA agreement, Fernandez said. The developer wants to extend the life of the Southeast Overtown/Park West Community Redevelopment Agency until 2042 to increase the value of the subsidies. It needs county approval to push the CRA’s end date from 2030, which would value MDM’s agreement at $50 million, to 2042.

MDM expects to create about 1,000 full-time jobs through the project and is working with local unions, Miami Dade College, Miami-Dade County Public Schools and other local groups on job training, Fernandez said.

The land deal is another sign of progress for Miami Worldcenter, a 27-acre master-planned community with condo, retail and apartment components. Just last week, the project’s community development district announced it issued private placement bonds that will fund $74 million of infrastructure upgrades to the project.

Overall, the mixed-use, master-planned community will include Paramount Miami Worldcenter, 450,000 square feet of high street retail, the Seventh Street Apartments, an additional 429-unit apartment building, and the 1,700-room Marriott Marquis Miami Worldcenter Hotel & Expo. Construction is vertical on Paramount and the Seventh Street Apartments, and Motwani said last week that he expects both to open in the fall of next year. Retail tenants will move in around the same time and are expected to open in early 2019.

Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe & Associates is the architect of the hotel and expo center and RTKL is the interior design firm. Both phases of the hotel will be completed by 2020, Fernandez told TRD.