Developer Applies To Demolish Downtown Miami Building To Make Way For 40-Story Tower

A demolition permit has been applied for at the downtown Miami site where the 40-story 501 First tower is planned.

501 First is planned to include 448 residential condo units, and buyers will be permitted to rent their units on a short-term basis through platforms such as Airbnb.

The new tower will not have a parking garage.

The building to be demolished was completed in 1924, according to county records.

City records show that the demolition permit was applied for on August 13.

The estimated demolition cost is listed at $71,000.

No other documentation has yet been submitted, so the permit is not yet in review by Miami’s Building Department. There is also no demolition contractor attached to the permit yet.

A construction permit for the new 40-story tower has not yet been applied for.

The plans were approved by the Urban Development Review Board in July, and are likely under review by the city’s Planning & Zoning Department.

Aria Development Group, which is building the project, recently completed a deal with the Miami-Dade School Board to build classroom space that will fill a need created by the new tower.

Completion of 501 First is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023.

 

The 1924 building set to be demolished:

(photo: Phillip Pessar)

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Anonymous
1 month ago

I wish they kept the building facade and built on top of it. They do in NYC and it looks really cool.

POLO
1 month ago

Yes, they should do that. That 1924 building is beautiful.

Anonymous
1 month ago

sayyyyyy whatttttt ohhhh hell nooooooooo!!!!
they better not!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous
1 month ago

Hi Mana.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Wishful thinking… It’ll be screwed up like Wynwood Bay/2500 Biscayne, or a crane mysteriously falls on it during construction like Paramount Bay. Don’t get me wrong, I’m probably one of the biggest historic preservation advocates posting on this website, but the replacement being a solid tower with nice curves and symmetry, and no parking garage and crappy mural, is an acceptable sacrifice. As long as it doesn’t end up changing into an Arquitectonica box after the building is demolished.

Realtalk Reilly
1 month ago

Yeah, it does suck that they couldn”t incorporate the facade into the new building. Not only would it have preserved the original 1920s streetscape but it would’ve made the building more interesting; the facade of the new one is certainly nothing special.

I guess the style of that old building isn’t quite notable enough to warrant historic preservation. It’s not like an Art Deco gem or anything. But with its distinctive archways and covered walkway in front of recessed storefronts, it is very typical of the architecture of the original boom era of downtown Miami, in the mid 1920’s.

Built in 1924, it survived the 1926 hurricane that destroyed much of the fledgling downtown. Then it survived many decades of urban blight and neglect, and made it to the modern era of downtown revitalization intact. But it won’t survive a callous developer’s wrecking ball.

Most likely the demo permit will be issued quickly and the building will be destroyed the very next day, before anyone gets any funny ideas about demanding the preservation of at least the historic facade, if nothing else.

The developers haven’t even applied for the construction permit for the new building, but as soon as they get permission to tear down the existing one, they won’t waste any time. Just like Tobacco Road. “Uh-oh, here come the meddling history buffs. Hey, you guys like history? Watch this! (((BOOOOOMMM!!!))) That building is now history! Hahahaha!!”

Anonymous
1 month ago

If the Orange Bowl had to go, this building has to go also… BOOM!

Realtalk Reilly
1 month ago

Ahhh, the unassailable logic of a Cane fan. Not a UM grad, mind you, nor a grad of any college with the possible exception of MDCC. But a Cane fan nonetheless.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Hehheh, someone who doesn’t realize how contradictory his thinking is because he thinks this old building is worth saving but this old building isn’t… but it is a contradiction nonetheless.

Realtalk Reilly
26 days ago

I said the historic facade was worth preserving, I didn’t say the building was worth saving.

Anonymous
1 month ago

As much as I hate to see that old building be demolished we need the density and a tower in that location. Go for it. It’s downtown

Anonymous
1 month ago

Look, I don’t care if it’s demolished.. if they didn’t giveashit about the Orange Bowl, then why waste a tear for this building.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Yankee Stadium was torn down. Sports stadiums tend to be pretty low on historic preservation because of how difficult they are to renovate to meet current needs.

If Miami didn’t “giveashit” about the Everglades Hotel, Eastwood/Ursine Mansion, and countless beautiful old prewar homes being insensitively renovated or demolished for boorish McModern boxes, then why “waste a tear” for the Miami Marine Stadium, which has been abandoned since Hurricane Andrew?

Anonymous
1 month ago

The Miami Marine Stadium hasn’t been torn down.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Another building with vacant units – great. Let’s, at least, start taxing vacant units. Vacant units don’t help downtown.

Anonymous
1 month ago

I’m all for new development, but it’s such a shame this building has to go. There are so many jank buildings in downtown that could be demolished and parking lots that could be replaced.

Anonymous
1 month ago

But, some people will say the same thing about those buildings you are saying about this one…

Anonymous
1 month ago

One of the few really nice older buildings that have actually been maintained. It’s a shame they aren’t interested in the little history we have down here like they do in other places.

NYC Transplant
1 month ago

That approach is one of the best elements of New York’s Landmarks Preservation Commission. They overreach plenty, but saving the older streetscape is a real plus. NYC has a lot more older buildings, and not all get that protection. Miami, on the other hand, has quite few, so it wouldn’t hurt to at least incentivize some limited preservation. Considering the age of Miami, 100 years is quite a long time, so a 97 year old building really could be considered “of historical value.”

Anonymous
1 month ago

If they let them tear down the Orange Bowl, then don’t waste tears for this building.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Shut up about that dumb stadium

Anonymous
1 month ago

I will, after you shut up about your ugly girlfriend

Anonymous
1 month ago

IDK, they let the Drake Hotel be demolished for 432 Park Avenue, but fight about rent-controlled, rattrap low-rises doomed to be demolition by neglect anyway.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Nobody gets money in the Pocket saving the building

Anonymous
1 month ago

Deny, must incorporate the original facade

Anonymous
1 month ago

A Metromover stop nearby that can take you to Brightline’s Miami Central Station… It’s gonna be nice living there.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Or, you know, walk three minutes… lol

But metromover stop would take you all over the rest of downtown, so I’ll call out my own snark.

Going to Wynwood before Wynwood Walls
1 month ago

If that AT&T building gets removed the area would be more walkable.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Wrong

Anonymous
1 month ago

They should keep it and build around it.

Anonymous
1 month ago

This should definitely be an adaptive reuse instead of demolition.

Concerned
1 month ago

No parking garage??? Where are all the residents etc supposed to park!!!

Anonymous
1 month ago

In front of your house.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Walking. No more parking garages in miami.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Location is perfecto!

Anonymous
1 month ago

Why doesn’t this tower need to have retail?

Anonymous
1 month ago

Because there’s already a lot of retail everywhere around this building.

Raul
1 month ago

That there isn’t a need now does not mean that it’s not going to be the need in the future… Glad for the work of urban planners who actually look to the possibilities and potential in the long term instead of just planning for a fleeting moment.

Anonymous
1 month ago

The existing structure one of the more handsome older buildings downtown, but downtown needs more building intensity.

Anonymous
1 month ago

For God’s sake… it’s not that they’re tearing down the Ansonia building in NY Upper West side!!!

Anonymous
1 month ago

Some developer had plans to build the tallest tower in Miami on the Miami River site.. but all these whiners boo hooed and it got shot down and turned into the Miami Circle site, and then that got turned into a big doggy toilet.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Big doggy toilet.. lol…

Anonymous
1 month ago

3 towers were built alongside a public walkway, everyone won including the dogs…

Anonymous
1 month ago

ROOF!

lol…

Anonymous
1 month ago

“everyone won including the dogs…”

Yeah, tell that to the taxpayers.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Hope they will not found any tooth and the archeologists will delay the project 😓

Anonymous
1 month ago

The word is “find” not found.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Nice infill!

Anonymous
1 month ago

Ewww why? It’s right next to Downtown 5th. We don’t want dirty ratchet tourist ruining downtown staying in cheap air b n b. I didn’t leave south beach for this bullsh#t to happen again. 🤢

Going to Wynwood before Wynwood Walls
1 month ago

There use to be a burger spot in it that i always wanted to check out but it closed down.

Anonymous
1 month ago

And World of Beer if I’m not mistaken.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Democratic Republic of Beer. RIP

Anonymous
1 month ago

That’s really one nice looking tower.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Keep the shell and build on top!! Its never too late, its miami this tower can still be a pipe dream lol (yes i know I’m not a developer just like any of you I have an opinion about my city lol)

Anonymous G
1 month ago

Nice! Good looking project in a great location

Anonymous
1 month ago

Please, tell us how you really feel….

Going to Wynwood before Wynwood Walls
1 month ago

With no construction permit applied this will stay a empty lot for a while

Anonymous
1 month ago

What nobody has noticed yet is that the new building looks a lot like Champlain towers that collapsed in Surfside I wouldn’t live there if you paid me I say keep the old building and stop building high-rises

Anonymous
1 month ago

Somebody need to pay some school for you to learn when and how to use commas and periods.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Dude, you must come from a farm if you think there are too many high-rises in Miami.