Office And Rental Towers Above MiamiCentral Set For Review

All Aboard Florida submitted long-awaited plans to the county yesterday for three ‘overbuild’ towers that will rise above the under-construction MiamiCentral project.

Plans call for two residential towers, each about 500 feet tall, along with a shorter office tower. In total, 800 rental units are planned in the first phase, along with about 200,000 square feet of office.

A robotic parking garage is planned below the towers, above the train station and retail space.

NBWW is the architect of the residential towers, while SOM designed the office towers. Zyscovich is an associate architect for all three towers.

Approval by a Dade zoning board is required, but the City of Miami won’t need to review the plans.

 

 

Elevations/renderings:

 

Floor plans:

Project summary:

 

 

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Oscar
6 years ago

Remarkable project; unremarkable architecture. The scope and importance of this project makes the relative blandness of the architecture all the more confusing. Maybe it’s for logistical or practical reasons. In the end, the connectivity and development this adds downtown easily overshadows any shortcoming on aesthetics. I just wish it did both.

MrDreTheOne
6 years ago

You make a great point, although none of us wanted a boondoggle like the Calatrava station in New York -as amazing as it will be when finished- I think that all of us wanted a captivating design that made Miami proud. Unfortunately, the station itself is just ok, it accomplishes its purpose, but it is bland and lacks any iconic characteristics. We all understand the limitations finances pose in this city, we cannot allow ourselves to subsidize lavish billion dollar projects like Qatar or UAE with oil revenues and slave like labor, but Miami does deserve a better station, worthy of such a unique and iconic city. As for the residential towers, they are just bad. Ditch the generic white tower with balconies look, do an all glass tower with a unique design, a round tower? Something that actually looks like it belongs with the station.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Look, you can’t ask for towers done in “all glass” and expect rental prices to stay within reach for the average Miamian…it just can’t happen. Iconic architecture requires substantial bank accounts to design, build, buy, or rent, not your “run of the mill” paycheck.

Anonymous
6 years ago

This project is going take downtown Miami to depths that can now only be imagined.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Depths?

Anonymous
6 years ago

Yeah, one of it’s meanings – a profound or intense state (as of thought or feeling).

Anonymous
6 years ago

Completely uninspired disconnected floating towers on podiums. Yeah it has to be a podium of some sort because of the station but they could be integrated somehow. A lot of the new built environment in Miami is done cheaply, like the endless painted CBS towers, and this is no exception. Look at any new train station in Europe. It’s embarrassing and demeans Miami and the concept of transit.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Agree with you 100%

Oscar
6 years ago

Europe is a great example. Just came from there and most of the stations, both old and new, are stunning. Miami is too young to settle in on an architectural style. A lot of these buildings going up are indistinguishable. You’d think that building something unique would be a selling point.

Karl
6 years ago

What you fail to understand is that transportation buildings in Europe are all public building created by governments that have much larger construction cost that the public funds. These governments build enormous public works and citizens pay for it from their much higher taxed incomes than Americans. AAF is a private development that get subsidies and tax breaks. The result will always be compromised design solutions. The french have a culture of spending over the top for public buildings that date back centuries. Lets remember that Versailles was public money. They are proud of their public buildings and see them more as monuments to their culture. We are far more practical and the private entreprise has a different mind set. I would rather live here but go there to visit and marvel at their monuments.

Anonymous
6 years ago

You made an interesting point and I have to agree with you, but it is sad that mostly everything is getting built is banal and most of the designs are undeniably not timeless. It just would be nice to see more world class buildings, parks, and boulevards in Miami.

Anonymous
6 years ago

The grand old train stations in Europe were constructed when railways were privately-owned. When the government nationalized them, many like Euston Station in London were demolished and replaced with a large concrete bunker. I’m not sure if it was value engineering, but it certainly was in fashion fifty years ago.

While I’m not too familiar with new stations and find newer European architecture to be rather dubious, Crossrail at Canary Wharf is a stunning example of how amazing architecture can come to be when the public and private sectors work together. With MiamiCentral being such and even though the American public sector commissions less impressive buildings across the board than the hit-or-miss private sector these days, I wish the architecture would change considerably. It should cause little to no delay in its opening, which will evidently be delayed further by external factors.

Anonymous
6 years ago

I, for one, don’t see anything wrong architectually with this project. Miami has to build with so many factors in mind. What may look “bland” to some, is probably most practical for the environment of South Florida. Remember, none of us are there when considerations are taken for what’s best for the final makeup of these towers.

Anonymous
6 years ago

What factors? What considerations? A top-down approach with no citizen participation concerning what MiamiCentral will end up like, rather some people that none of us know making the “best” decisions that we should 100% support because they’re right?

Anonymous
6 years ago

Here, I’ll give you three:

!. Miami is in a hurricane evironment.

2. Miami rents are staggeringly high when you compare them to paychecks.

3. The cost to build each structure.

Anonymous
6 years ago

1. Miami being a hurricane environment doesn’t translate to being limited to building boring buildings. The same is said about Japan and earthquakes, but I’m sure you’ve seen buildings in areas of comparable seismic activity like Taiwan and parts of China which debunk this myth.

2. The rents in these buildings will end up being expensive anyway.

3. If cost translates to value engineering boxes, then theoretically every building would be a box. Obviously this is not the case because companies tend to value high architecture as a selling point and symbolic.

Anonymous
6 years ago

The vast majority of buildings in Asia aren’t eye pleasing please take an glance at the rest of the cities and see the endless boxy buildings as far as the eye could see.

Anonymous
6 years ago

You still don’t get the point. These are rental apartments going up in an area that’s economically depressed which is why a certain amount of jobs is being set aside for the residents there when construction starts and these towers are also targeting college students and low wage earners who want to live downtown but are so far being priced out. And you can’t compare what’s built in places like Japan, Taiwan and China to Miami. Those places certainly have their own so called “boring” architecture, they’re just mixed in with hundreds or thousands of impressive architecture to the point where they don’t stand out. Do you know China alone has eight cities the size of NYC?

People are always complaining about the architecture of these new buildings in Miami and would like to see lots of glitzy glass structures. But everyone forgot about what the last hurricane that hit Miami did to those glitzy glass highrises in Brickell. Yeah, that was a very expensive lesson I don’t think any developer wants to repeat.

Yet Another Anonymous
6 years ago

That’s not fair, those windows should never have been so wimpy as to not take a mere 100 mph cat 2 wind. I know construction debris were blamed for some but still, there will always be projectiles in a storm, that should be part of the code.

Anonymous
6 years ago

You say anything in support of this project as-is just to sound smart, and call out anybody who offers constructive criticism. I bet you would even defend bulldozing Little Havana for Ville Radieuse.

Economically depressed? The fact that most comments not part of some conversation are along the times of “MIAMI IS BOOMING BABY!!!…!,” it doesn’t seem so. What a better time to call for better architecture.

Targeted to college students and low wage earners who want to live downtown but are so far being priced out? The residential component contains smaller units with shared living space, but it’s a fraction of the total units. Certainly this doesn’t imply the project is only being “targeted” to such demographic. Also, what business would students have living downtown? I can understand low wage earners and living close to work, but every city supports the idea of students living where they attend (i.e. South Miami and University Park). It still wouldn’t be affordable anyway.

I was comparing Miami to those countries’ cities based on natural disasters and architecture, not population. Wouldn’t it be great for Miami to have “hundreds or thousands of impressive architecture” to mix out it’s ugly buildings? Too bad many of its remaining prominent locations will end up being occupied by the latter.

I never said the buildings should be glassy. It’s about the massing, which is unacceptable as boxes while being called the best thing since sliced bread.

We haven’t even addressed the office building, which is undeniably the worst part of the project. It used to have a nice flatiron shape, like the bow of a ship, and now makes the residential look like NYC’s Waldorf Towers.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Oh wow, with that said, I guess I’ll just shutup, keep my opinions to myself and go away. Because, you know, I don’t wanna “say anything in support of this project as-is just to sound smart, and call out anybody who offers constructive criticism.”

Anonymous
6 years ago

Totally agree with you

Anonymous
6 years ago

For what it’s worth, these towers are unimpressive. The whole thing looks like a 1950s urban renewal development. NBWW and SOM were the architects for the Fontainebleau Tresor Tower and Southeast Financial Center respectively, but it’s like most their recent work is mediocre. I bet Zyscovich insisted on boxes.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Plans say SOM ans Zyscovich… not NBWW.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Unimpressive?

Nothing like this has ever been done in Miami and all you’re concerned about is how “cute” these rental towers aren’t in your opinion.-

Anonymous
6 years ago

Neven been done before? Please tell me you knew downtown had a station, tracks, and FEC passenger service until the 1960s.

Anonymous
6 years ago

I think he’s referring to having rental towers built upon an already elevated train station in downtown Miami.

Anonymous
6 years ago

O’wow, someone had to really explain that to him. He belted out that statement as if the train station in the1940’s and 50’s was built EXACTLY like what AAF is planning on building today.

Anonymous
6 years ago

If he’s referring to having rental towers built upon an already elevated train station having never been done in Miami, it indeed hasn’t. But what’s his point? It’s been done elsewhere in this globalized modern world of engineering marvels. While I’m no engineer, I can assure you building anything but a box will not cause the entire lot to spontaneously combust.

Also, the old depot was built in 1912. The renders do look like some conceptual project from the 1940s and 50s, and I don’t exactly mean that in a positive way.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Really? Where were you in the 1940’s and 50’s to actually witness conceptual projects from that era?

Anonymous
6 years ago

No, but I’ve seen the plans, renders, and visions which are well documented. Do your own research, smartass.