Ophir Sternberg’s Lionheart, partners plan office-retail project in Miami Design District
Developers add to dev site assemblage with $20M purchase of two lots
Ophir Sternberg’s Lionheart Capital and its partners plan an office and retail project in the Miami Design District.
The firm and Leviathan Development, an investment vehicle for Lionheart’s partner and director of development, Allison Greenfield, as well as Venezuelan developers Eduardo Pelaez and Alvaro Cardenas’ Well Duo firm, want to build a three-story project on the northwest corner of Northeast Second Avenue and Northeast 42nd Street, according to a Lionheart spokesperson.
The project would span 0.6 acres on three lots.
This month, the partnership paid $20 million for the two lots at 4200 and 4240 Northeast Second Avenue, according to records and real estate database Vizzda. The seller, Miami Design District Associates, consists of Craig Robins’ Dacra, L Catterton Real Estate and Brookfield Properties.
To complete the assemblage, Lionheart still has to finish acquiring the property at 4218 Northeast Second Avenue, which is in between the recently purchased lots. Lionheart, based at 4218 Northeast Second Avenue in Miami, owns half of the interest in the building and is under contract to purchase the remaining stake, according to the spokesperson.
The seller is Ricardo Dunin, a former principal at Lionheart who parted ways with the firm in 2020 and launched his Miami-based real estate company Oak Capital. Dunin, through Flagler Holding Group, purchased the building in 2003 for $710,000, records show. He then sold half of the stake to Lionheart when he joined the firm in 2010 and will sell the remaining interest in October, Dunin told The Real Deal.
Dunin and Lionheart declined to disclose the purchase price.
Lionheart and its partners’ wager on office real estate comes as the asset class’ viability is under scrutiny.
Out-of-state firms’ descent on South Florida from 2020 to early last year had the real estate industry abuzz over strong leasing activity. Much of the excitement was over financial and tech firms, which homed in on prime areas such as the Design District and Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood. Yet, these companies are now top contributors for sublease availability in Miami-Dade County, putting 240,000 square feet back on the market as of this month, according to a CBRE report.
Tech firms also haven’t been as big of a boon for office space as expected. Data from CompStak, which provides crowdsourced information on leasing, shows local tech deals have been on the decline since 2021.
Also in the Design District, Miami Design District Associates plans the 15-story The Ursa with 180,000 square feet of offices at 30 Northeast 39th Street. The project would include ground-floor retail and three levels of parking.