The Real Deal Miami

American Dream developer pulls out of deal to buy Archbishop Curley in Little Haiti

Triple Five had planned apartments, condos and retail space on the 15.6-acre site
By Ina Cordle | October 24, 2018 01:30PM

Aerial view of the property

Triple Five Group, the developer of the proposed American Dream Miami mall, has pulled out of its contract to buy the Archbishop Curley-Notre Dame High School site where it had planned a mixed-use project, The Real Deal has learned.

Robert Gorlow, a Miami Lakes-based consultant for Triple Five, confirmed that the Edmonton, Canada-based company withdrew its offer for the 15.56-acre site at 4949 Northeast Second Avenue in Little Haiti.

“We elected not to go forward,” he said. Citing a confidentiality agreement, he declined to comment further.

Gorlow confirmed in May that Triple Five was under contract for the site, but had declined to provide a price for closing date. Triple Five, led by Iranian-Canadian developer Eskandar Ghermezian, planned to apply for Special Area Plan zoning for the Archbishop Curley campus, where it would build apartments, condominiums and retail space, Gorlow had said.

The Archdiocese of Miami closed the school in 2016 and late that year reportedly received a $65 million unsolicited offer for the property. In September 2017, it hired Avison Young’s David Duckworth, John K. Crotty and Michael T. Fay and Bezold Realty to market the site, unpriced. Bids were due two months later in November 2017.

If approved for T6-12 zoning, the site could be developed into a mixed-use project with up to 2,300 residential units, up to 28-story buildings and about 5 million square feet of space, Avison Young previously said.

A source familiar with the property said a back-up contract is likely in place. Avison Young declined to comment through a spokesperson on whether another contract is now pending for the site.

The property in Little Haiti is north of the Miami Design District and west of the Upper East Side neighborhood. It’s near two major project sites, the Eastridge Special Area Plan at 5045 Northeast Second Avenue and the planned $200 million redevelopment and expansion of the Jewish Health Systems campus.

Little Haiti is also home to the planned 17.7-acre Magic City Innovation District. The mixed-use technology and culture-driven development between 60th Street and 64th Street and from Northeast Second Avenue to the railroad tracks, is being developed by Tony Cho, founder and CEO of Metro 1; Cirque de Soleil founder Guy Laliberté, venture capitalist Bob Zangrillo, and Plaza Equity Partners, led by Neil Fairman, Anthony Burns and George Helmstetter. The first phase is underway.

Triple Five, owned by the Ghermezian family, owns such malls as the Mall of the America in Bloomington, Minnesota and the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, Canada. The $4 billion American Dream Miami project’s zoning was approved by the Miami-Dade County Commission in May. The 3.5 million-square-foot mixed-use project will cover at least 174 acres in unincorporated northwest Miami-Dade.