A North Beach master plan for one of the area's last untouched neighborhoods was unanimously approved this week by the Miami Beach City Commission. The design provides a broad outline for future development that supporters say meets the interest of developers and honors the area's charming, small-town roots.
Designed by Dover Kohl & Partners, Plan NoBe offers guidelines for evaluating building proposals and direct capital improvements. Containing plans, diagrams, maps and pictures, Plan NoBe sets out five key components: make a town center, provide more mobility options, protect and enhance the neighborhood, better utilize public lands, and build to last.
The plan, devised with input by local residents and officials alike, is a step in the right direction for North Beach, say neighborhood activists. The strip for years seemed a forgotten pocket next to its glitzy neighbors. Yet developers and investors alike have been looking at North Beach as the final frontier in Miami Beach while locals have been just as vocal about retaining its affordable prices.
“For us, local businesses, cultural vibrancy and economic diversity are what make North Beach unique," Kirk Paskal, a steering committee member of the North Beach Neighbors Alliance, said Wednesday.
Developers in the area see the plan as the perfect complement to development projects underway. "You want to be in a neighborhood that has character and identity," said David Martin, CEO of Terra Group.
Terra Group is building Eighty Seven Park in North Beach, a 70-unit residential tower with an adjacent 2-acre private park designed by architect Renzo Piano. For Martin, North Beach's down-to-earth vibe is one of its biggest assets.
Other investors are following Martin's lead. Down the street, Alan and Diane Lieberman's South Beach Hotel Group are buying up properties along Harding Avenue. Plans for a new residential project on 69th Street and Collins Avenue were recently unveiled. And at the soon-to-be constructed L'Atelier, a luxurious penthouse outfitted with furnishings by interior designer Holly Hunt is available for a cool $25 million.