Hyatt may rebuild Miami hotel and convention center

The Hyatt Regency and the James L. Knight Center share a 4.5-acre site on the Miami River

Apr.April 23, 2017 11:15 AM

Hyatt Regency Miami and the city-run James L. Knight Convention Center (Credit: Carl Juste / Miami Herald)

Hyatt Hotels Corp. and the Miami city government are discussing a deal to redevelop the company’s Hyatt Regency hotel in downtown Miami and the adjacent James L. Knight Center convention complex. The  hotel and convention center opened on the north bank of the Miami River in 1982.

Terms of a potential redevelopment plan would give Hyatt 12 months to produce a master plan for construction of a new hotel with meeting space, plus a mixed-use project, at the 4.5-acre site of the hotel and convention center, 400 Southeast 2 Avenue. Hyatt might consider new uses for the site, including offices and residences.

The plan that Hyatt and the city are discussing would not entail replacement of any or all of the existing 36,000 square feet of meeting space at the Knight Center.

If Hyatt and the city commission agree on a redevelopment plan, the company would sign a new 99-year ground lease with the city, replacing an existing lease set to expire in six years. Upon expiration of the existing lease, Hyatt would have a 45-year renewal option.

Hyatt runs the 612-room Hyatt Regency Miami, and the city controls the Knight Center, including the 4,500-seat James L. Knight Auditorium and the Arthur Ashe Auditorium. The Knight Center, operated by contractor SMG, got a municipal subsidy of approximately $400,000 last year. An audit shows that the Hyatt Regency generated 43 million of gross revenue last year.

If city commissioners and Hyatt reach a redevelopment deal, it would require approval from voters in a citywide referendum to take effect. [Miami Herald] Mike Seemuth

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