The Real Deal Miami

$1B Magic City project in Little Haiti brings on Cirque du Soleil founder

Tony Cho, Bob Zangrillo and Plaza Equity Partners are developing the mixed-use district
By Katherine Kallergis | December 05, 2017 05:00PM

Rendering of Magic City with Tony Cho, Bob Zangrillo and Guy Laliberte (Credit: Getty Images)

About a year after unveiling plans for Magic City, developers Tony Cho, Bob Zangrillo and Plaza Equity Partners are bringing an arts and entertainment partner to the $1 billion project planned for Miami’s Little Haiti neighborhood.

Guy Laliberte, founder of Cirque du Soleil, is partnering with the developers through his Montreal company Lune Rouge, which develops and invests in projects tied to technology, arts, entertainment and real estate, according to a press release.

The first step will be to apply for a temporary use permit for the former Magic City Trailer Park. The developers also plan to renovate and convert roughly 22 buildings that are part of the development site.

As creative director, Laliberte will create a pop-up experience on the former trailer park land with local retail and food and beverage tenants, Cho said. It’s slated to open in about a year.

The 17-acre mixed-use technology and culture-driven development will eventually include a 30,000-square-foot Magic City Studios and a 15,000-square-foot innovation center with startups, co-working space and other collaborations; an office tower; retail space; workforce housing and possibly a hotel. It’s planned for land between Northeast 60th and 64th streets and Northeast Second Avenue to the railroad tracks.

Rendering of Magic City

Cho, founder and CEO of Metro 1, and Zangrillo, a venture capitalist, began assembling land in Little Haiti in 2012. Plaza Equity Partners, led by Neil Fairman, Anthony Burns and George Helmstetter, is also a partner in Magic City.

The developers are launching the Magic City Innovation District Foundation, which works with members of the community. It’s hosting a Caribbean and Haitian art show for Miami Art Week, called Route 104, at 6300 Northeast Fourth Avenue.