The Miami-Dade County Internal Services Department will be receiving industry feedback on the proposed Metrocenter project to redevelop nearly 17 acres of county-owned land in downtown Miami. Staff is to meet with real estate developers Aug. 29 to 31 to get their input on the project prior to publishing the final request for proposals.
On Tuesday, the county published a Request for Proposal (RFP) draft detailing what it is looking for from the Metrocenter project in the heart of the 28 acres that serve as the seat of the local government.
Developers are asked to respond whether any provisions of the RFP are preventing firms from responding to the solicitation and if there are any provisions in a competitive solicitation for a similar project that respondents would like the county to include in this request for proposals.
Also, developers are asked if they have suggestions specific to this project that the county should consider in determining how best to proceed to obtain an advantageous contract and maximize revenue to the county, and general comments that would add value and guidance to the local government on the project.
The Metrocenter project seeks to transform downtown Miami into a 24-hour community with affordable, workforce, and market-price housing, an intermodal terminal with a direct connection to Government Center Metrorail and Metromover, a Cultural Arts Campus with a new library and space for HistoryMiami, parks and open spaces, daycare, pre-K, and elementary, middle school, and high school buildings, and public and fleet parking.
The request for comments issued is for market research purposes and not a solicitation, the document details, and no price offers or unsolicited proposals for this project are sought.
Once a solicitation is finally open, the county is to evaluate the bidders considering the qualifications and capabilities for a master development, the qualifications and capabilities to complete the Downtown Intermodal Terminal, the approach to the project delivery and sustainable practices, and the financial qualifications of the proposer.
In addition, the county released draft design guidelines with specific timelines and requirements for the project. Among these, the county is anticipating the Metrocenter will be built in 12 to 15 years.
The Master Developer should allocate more than 2,000 units or 35% of the total housing toward workforce/affordable housing and is encouraged to find ways to increase this number to whatever the market will bear. “At least 10% of all units shall be reserved for households with incomes less than 80% of the then-current Area Median Income (AMI),” the document says, and at least 25% to households with incomes up to 140% of the same AMI benchmark.
The new library is to have a business center with publicly available computers, a 300-seat theater, a multipurpose event space, art gallery exhibition and storage space, back-of-house, work, employee, and support areas, a separate area for children and teens, several work areas for different tasks, such as digitization, microfilm, and genealogy, in addition to the collection space for books and materials.
For the downtown bus terminal, projects such as Washington, DC’s Union Station Bus Terminal, Denver’s Union Station Bus Concourse, and the Salesforce Transit Center in San Francisco are examples of similar projects the county is looking for.
New 50,000-square-foot county commission chambers are to have public seating for at least 300 people, broadcast capabilities, ADA-compliant hearing-assist system, and a green room for officials, among other amenities for the commission to be able to perform its duties.
Additional requirements are outlined in the guidelines for each component the county aims to include.
As Miami Today reported last week, county elected officials are rooting for a project that would become a world-class neighborhood.
“We’re going to ask you to look around and tell us what could be here, and to be incredibly visionary to create a world-class neighborhood,” Commissioner Eileen Higgins, who has been working on the project for years, told an industry day meeting Aug. 10. “This land that we, the county, as the people’s land, and it needs to be used for the people’s purposes.”
“We are hoping this will be the benchmark for urban redevelopment worldwide,” added Mayor Daniella Levine Cava.