Electra America, BH score approval for first phase of $1B Southland Mall redevelopment

Cutler Bay officials signed off on a proposed eight-story, 470-unit apartment building with 14K sf of retail

Electra America’s Joe Lubeck and BH Group’s Issac and Liat Toledano with rendering of Southplace City Center
Electra America’s Joe Lubeck and BH Group’s Issac and Liat Toledano with rendering of Southplace City Center (LinkedIn, MSA Architects, Getty)

Electra America and BH Group are launching the first phase of the joint venture’s proposed Southland Mall redevelopment with an eight-story apartment building. 

Town of Cutler Bay officials on Wednesday administratively approved the site plan for the project, which will entail 470 rental units, 14,000 square feet of retail and a parking garage, Town Manager Rafael Casals confirmed. It will be built on an outparcel of the 105-acre site at 20505 South Dixie Highway. 

Last month, the town also approved the conceptual master plan for Southplace City Center, an ambitious $1 billion mixed-use project that would surround the existing 808,776-square-foot indoor mall, city records show. 

Electra America, a subsidiary of Tampa-based American Landmark, and Aventura-based BH Group are proposing to add 4,395 apartments, a 150-room hotel, 60,000 square feet of medical office space, 150,000 square feet of retail out parcels and a community amphitheater. 

Each new segment of Southplace City Center will go through an administrative site plan approval process, said Ron Gaither, Electra America’s chief development officer. 

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

To make way for the new apartment building, the joint venture plans to tear down a big box store that was divided into a Ross Dress for Less store and a Kmart store that closed in 2017, Gaither said. The development team is working on a plan to move the Ross store to a space at the indoor mall before the demolition is expected to begin in the fourth quarter of next year, Gaither added. 

The new apartment building will be a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units, but the joint venture has not set the asking rents, Gaither said. 

A year ago, Electra America and BH Group paid $100.3 million for Southland Mall, which sits on 80 acres in an Opportunity Zone. The federally designated areas grant investors tax breaks on capital gains if they place their money into projects in low-income neighborhoods. After purchasing Southland Mall, the joint venture acquired a shuttered Sears store on an adjacent 15 acres for $34 million

The 130,000-square-foot big box building is being demolished 

Electra America, led by managing partner Joe Lubeck, and BH Group, led by Isaac and Liat Toledano, are also updating the indoor Southland Mall with cosmetic improvements and the addition of new retailers, including a specialty grocer. 

Electra America’s portfolio encompasses more than $9 billion in commercial real estate properties in the Sun Belt region, according to the firm’s website. BH Group is currently involved in several commercial projects in South Florida, including a 32-story, 400-unit apartment building in North Miami Beach, and a 26-story, 308-unit multifamily project in Aventura with its partner Related Group.