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Monday, November 04, 2013

Why people are voting "no" for Grove Bay

A couple of friends voted no regarding the Grove Bay Waterfront Project at Scotty's Landing this is what caused them to vote no.

1) a 50 year lease with two 15 year options (80 years) to a private firm who promise $1.4 million annually. The Cheesecake Factory pays $250,000 per year. So we are giving 7 acres to a private group for the equivalent of six Cheesecake Factory rents.
2) the property includes submerged lands with no indication of its use.

Very interesting. Why the submerged lands? Are they next going to put a marina in?

This whole vote is very sketchy, again, here is the whole issue on the ballot, it really does not say anything and sort of gives everything to the developers to do with what they wish:

Proposed lease of city-owned waterfront and submerged lands in Coconut Grove 

Shall the City be authorized to lease approximately 7 acres of waterfront and submerged lands in Coconut Grove to Grove Bay Investment Group, LLC, providing for 1) a minimum of $1.4 million in guaranteed annual rent and 2) approximately $17.9 million of privately funded improvements to redevelop an existing marina and public baywalk, construct restaurants and, partially fund a public parking garage for a 50 year term with two 15 year renewal options? 

That is why voting NO on this is the best choice for the moment. Once we give this away, that's it for 80 years. Who knows what will end up on that land. It's all about getting their hands on the property and the submerged lands and then what?You can get more info on Stop Grove Bay here.

For linking to this one story, just click on the time it was posted & just this story will open for sharing - only through social media. Not copying and pasting.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't a marina part of the project? I thought that was always part of the plan, and that they even had the boat racks redesigned in the rendering? If a marina is part of it, submerged lands are necessary.

November 04, 2013 10:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim balester,

Im voting yes.the grove needs a boost.its way to old fashion for miami standards.and crime is horrible here

November 04, 2013 10:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does this rent seem low to anyone else? If it seems low now, how will it seem in fifty years? If it seems like it set perfectly for the market today, how will it seem in fifty years?

Anyone know what commercial space rented for in the grove 50 years ago? Did anyone then conceive how high it would be today?

This still seems like a sweetheart deal.

November 04, 2013 10:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That is so interesting! A submerged land lease for a marina? What in the world is going on here? Since when do marinas need a place to put boats in the water? I smell a rat!

*I hope my sarcasm was dually noted.

This is almost as bad as Glenn Terry saying to vote no because of global warming. No, seriously. He actually posted that on his blog.

November 04, 2013 12:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did The Cheesecake Factory pay to build CocoWalk for the owners? Is Cheesecake Factory paying all of the property taxes for the owners of CocoWalk? Is Cheesecake Factory required to maintain all of Cocowalk building and grounds for the owners? When The Cheesecake Factory leaves are they leaving behind all of their capital improvements? Did the Cheesecake Factory help pay for a municipal parking garage? The answer is "no" on all accounts. You can't compare Grove Bay to Cheesecake Factory. Come on, let's all grow up a little bit here and instead of throwing out uniformed questions to scare people let the facts come out. Vote YES!

November 04, 2013 1:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is highway robbery taking place right under our noses. Submerged Land is NOT the real issue here. It goes far deeper than that! As a Grove resident, I vote NO as well.
Take a look at what one intelligent man who is currently running for council said about it.
Are you ready for a casino in your back yard? Me thinks not.!blogger-feed/c1ou

November 04, 2013 2:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post! I voted no. It's far too long of a lease. 50 years? That's ridiculous. It's not only giving the developers the rights to this land, it's giving their children and grandchildren the right. Let's face it...50 + 15 +15 years, the original individuals who head the company won't be alive. Their heirs will have control of the land. Who knows what the heirs will do. The 50 year lease was a terrible idea. If it was a solid 15, 20, or 25, some of us might vote yes instead. Also, the mock up (rendering) is awful. Arquitectonica dialed in the architecture, with a visual that looks completely UN-Coconut Grove. If they'd done some research, investigated Coconut Grove vernacular architecture, and incorporated some of the history into their design, a lot of us might vote yes instead. Why something that looks so generic and Miami Beach? (Except Miami Beach City government would never allow this building...they actually have taste and a respect for their architectural history. The South Beach public library is miles better than what's being proposed on million dollar waterfront property.)

This is too long a lease for slap-dash, dialed in architecture (which apparently, isn't even the "real" design that will be used! maybe will be worse), so please, vote NO. We deserve much, much better than this.

I propose that some Grovites with deep pockets contact DPZ, a Miami firm with a history of international developments that actually take into consideration WHERE they are going to build. If this plan fails, get together another bid, with fantastic architecture, and excellent seafood restaurant(s) that Grovites will embrace. Not a glass and block monstrosity with Shula's! Honestly. Don't think it's possible? Check out Owen's Fish Camp in Sarasota: slick, modern, cool, inventive menu, but STILL respects the 1920s history of the local area and the "Old Florida" vernacular architecture and was designed, inside and out, to charm! Seriously, folks, Miami doesn't have to be vulgar. We can elect to do something different. A venture that is new, modern, and money-making. Other cities do this ALL the time. It's called: having standards.

By the way, Mr. Fort, who is running for the Village Council, works for Arquitectonica, so I'm assuming he supports this Grove Bay plan. I did not vote for him, either.

Laura A.

November 04, 2013 3:43 PM  
Blogger Zickie said...

I voted No. I work as a senior project director for a large multi-national company that does project development throughout the US and internationally, and consequently have a very good basis for making an assessment relative to other successful (and unsuccessful) developments of a similar nature.

The development proposal for this location has been poorly planned, communicated, and managed. The vote of no is not a vote against development, it's a vote against the proposed development which has major flaws associated with it. Traffic impacts and required improvements, architectural harmony, economic impacts to existing business, operating hour impacts to the local community to name a few. The communication and methodology to try and gain major stakeholder (i.e. the immediate surrounding community) came too late and tried to push the development as a "done deal" without listening to the community feedback. I understand you can't get agreement from everyone, however based on my experience, there would have been a lot more community support, even potentially pushing a driver for a vote of "Yes". It's telling that there isn't a major drive for "yes" from the community. It's sad, because there are elements in the development which would have been positive for the area, it just needed more work to make it a more palatable and sellable development. Development for the sake of development isn't the path we need to be going down here.

Additionally, the procurement process is inconsistent with procurement best practice around and publicly owned property. The Contract terms suck, and that's what happens typically when there is only one bidder. There is no competitive driver to get Miami the best deal. The developer is in the drivers seat around the terms since there is an edge of desperation to get "any deal" on the table.

The area is ripe and ready for the right type of development, but this isn't it and we shouldn't settle for mediocrity, even without considering the terrible contract terms for Miami associated with development.

Zickie All

November 04, 2013 4:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed! Now that the City of Miami (read Sarnoff) has botched two RFP's perhaps they should recuse themselves as having a conflict of interest and bring in a nationally recognized firm to write a fair and reasonable RFP and then reach out to the top national and international real estate development firms to bid on it. This whole process has been as shady as it could be. THe Grove and District 2 deserve better than Sarnoff and his staff. Please vote NO and then let's vote to recall Sarnoff before he does any more damage. BTW, you can also thank Sarnoff and the other brilliant commissioners for the electronic billboards on the side of the Children's Museum on Watson Island. Unbelievable. It's death by a thousand cuts.

November 04, 2013 7:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill O'riley

Cheesecake factory and now duffys is the only reason i even go to the grove.actualy only duffys because theres a new cheesecake factory in dolphin mall and i dont have to pay to park.

November 04, 2013 7:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you like the dolphin mall, we are glad you are not a fan of the grove. the grove DOES NOT want to become the dolphin mall, and is not competing with it. So, why the hell would we want a development that looks like that's its goal????

November 05, 2013 5:12 PM  

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