Image: A scenic N.W. 1st Avenue with the Miami Arena to the right
It never fails. Every time I am in the vicinity of N.W. 1st Avenue and the old Miami Arena, visionary mode kicks in. Visionary mode, by the way, is when an area’s potential is blindingly bright, despite its existing blighted state. This little section of the CBD is located, more or less, where Overtown meets Parkwest.
10 11 reasons why I like it:
- The metro rail runs through it and there is a station servicing the area
- The FEC corridor, which is a likely future public transit route runs through the heart of the neighborhood to further supplement the hood’s transit potential
- N.W. 1st Avenue, which runs through the center of the neighborhood, is palm tree lined, and has a spacious median, making the Avenue pedestrian, auto, and eye friendly.
- Glenn Straub owns the Miami Arena and the site represents a potential development catalyst for the area, depending on what the Wellington-based millionaire finally does with the property. At first he considered re-utilizing it, then selling it, now razing it to the ground in place of a new development. He didn’t spend 28 some odd million dollars for nothing. Look to see some action soon.
- Logik, a proposed office development, is planned for the neighborhood
- Miami-Dade Transit recently relocated its offices to a new state-of-the-art building in the neighborhood
- It’s a short walk away from the heart of the CBD, Biscayne Bay, and burgeoning Media and Entertainment District
- Parkwest flanks the east side of the neighborhoods with hundreds of millions worth in new development
- Miami 21 zones it T6, which means it will be ripe and ready for further densification
- The area is heavily under utilized, under valued, and filled with vacant land (this means it’s a blank canvas for new development).
- The FDOT’s future plans to reposition the I-395 would add park space to the northern boundary of the area
There are currently two large scale residential developments: the Madison and Park Place. The former being a condo and the latter being an apartment complex. The periphery of the area is riddled with low income housing. The average Joe probably wouldn’t feel comfortable riding a bike or walking through this neighborhood due to the presence of vagrants and murky elements. Still, the area, despite its lackluster on-the-surface appearance has much going for it and will likely see a transformation within the next couple of years. Sorry gentrification activists.
Image: Map of the area. The blue line represents the existing Metrorail line, the red line represents the FEC rail line (probable future public transit line), The red plot is the site for the proposed Logik, the green plot represents the new site for Miami-Dade transit, and the Orange represents the Miami Arena.