Miramar-based Spirit Airlines will consolidate its headquarters and other facilities in Broward County at a new $250 million campus in Dania Beach.
Spirit’s project at the Dania Pointe mixed-use development, just south of Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, will span up to 500,000 square feet. It will include corporate offices and a crew-training facility equipped with flight simulators.
Spirit signed an agreement with Kimco Realty, the master developer of Dania Pointe, to buy the land for its project. Spirit is under contract with Kimco to acquire 9.5 acres of the 102-acre Dania Pointe development, Paul Puma, president of Kimco’s southern region, told The Real Deal on Friday. He declined to disclose the contract price. JLL will serve as project adviser and Gensler as the lead architectural firm.
“They have the right to build up to a half million square feet of office space. It’s entitled for that,” Puma said. But “they may not build a half million square feet immediately. They may expand over time.”
In addition to the commercial space, Spirit also plans to build an apartment building solely for employees and trainees near the site of its planned headquarters, Puma said. “The residential component for Spirit Airlines is a very important part of the overall project,” he said, but so far, Spirit has submitted plans for only the commercial component to the Dania Beach city government for approval.
Ted Christie, Spirit’s president and CEO, announced the project Thursday night at the Broward Alliance’s annual dinner and cocktail party. “We’re bursting at the seams in our existing headquarters in Miramar,” Christie told guests at the event. “We operate six different facilities around Broward to support our operations. We need to centralize our support services, training programs … and more.”
Spirit leases about 56,000 square feet of executive office space at the Miramar Park of Commerce, and the lease agreement expires in January 2025, according to the airline’s annual 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
In March 2018, Spirit leased about 26,000 square feet of additional office space at the Miramar Park of Commerce under an agreement that expires in June 2021, according to the 10-K.
In Fort Lauderdale, the airline operates a training facility at 1050 Lee Wagener Boulevard in about 12,000 square feet of space, leased under an agreement that expires in January 2020.
“Twenty years ago, Spirit moved to South Florida – headquartered first in a trailer by the airport,” Christie said. “Soon after, we moved to our current facility in Miramar.”
Since Christie was named CEO of the airline about seven years ago, Spirit has expanded its fleet from 35 jets to nearly 140 and expects to operate nearly 300 by the mid-2020s. “As the fastest growing airline in the country by any measure, we continue to expand our global footprint. Today, we serve 75 destinations with nearly 700 daily flights,” Christie said. “We are now the largest air carrier at Fort Lauderdale.”