International Council of the MIAMI Association of REALTORS



International Articles and Advertisements

The MIAMI Association of REALTORS® features a half-page article each week in The Miami Herald –International Edition, promoting MIAMI Members and the South Florida real estate market to affluent consumers in Latin America and Europe.

  • Miami is Expanding, Improving its Rail Options

    by | Nov 09, 2016

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    Home to Florida’s only heavy rail rapid transit system, Miami already offers residents and tourists a 25-mile Metrorail connecting South Miami, downtown and the airport. The popular Miami Metromover —smaller, fully-automated trains — links downtown’s cultural art institutions to Brickell, the area’s epicenter for international banking.

    With the future in mind — millennials or those between 18-to-34 prefer to take trains versus driving cars, according to various studies — Miami has plans to improve and expand its rail. From the $3.1 billion under construction All Aboard Florida rail system connecting downtown Miami to Orlando to the potential Bay Link Project linked Miami Beach to the mainland, South Florida residents have plenty to be excited about.

    South Florida, one of the world’s top cities, even more attractive to the next generation. At 95 million, millennials are already the largest generation alive. By 2025, millennials will comprise the vast majority of the U.S. workforce. Catering to millennials’ preferences for rail and effective transit options will be critical in attracting and retaining top talent in the coming decades.

    Miami Rail Ridership Strong

    Ridership on Miami’s Metrorail system stands at 75,000 daily, according to Miami’s department of transportation and public works department. Those are strong numbers for a Metrorail system that opened in May 20, 1984.

    The Metrorail saw a 10.56 percent increase in ridership between 2012 and 2013, according to the American Public Transportation Agency (APTA). About 21 million trips were taken through the heavy-rail transit system in 2013.

    Miami Metromover ridership is also strong. The fully-automated trains transport almost 10 million passengers around the downtown and Brickell neighborhoods each year. The Metromover is popular with tourists, students, attorneys and more.

    Orange Line to the Airport

    In July 2012, the county completed construction of the Metrorail Orange Line to Miami International Airport. It was a 2.4-mile project that cost $506 million and took about three years to build. The line allows residents and tourists to take the metro from downtown to the airport.

    Popular with airport workers and international travelers, the line starts and ends at Metrorail’s newest station, a state-of-the-art facility with digital screens announcing train and flight schedules.

    New Miami Metrorail Trains on the Way

    Miami is using surtax funds of $375 million to buy a new fleet of Metrorail cars. Hitachi Rail USA will build 136 cars at its Miami factory to replace Miami-Dade County’s Metrorail fleet. The first new vehicles are scheduled go into service in late 2017, Hitachi said.

    The new cars will be equipped with the “latest technology that will offer transit customers improved reliability and customer service.”

    South Miami-Dade Pushing for Light Rail

    In late March, leaders of Homestead, Palmetto Bay and other suburban cities gathered for a meeting to insist Miami-Dade agree to fund a study on how to build light rail along a current 20-mile busway. The Metrorail’s most-southern stop is Dadeland Mall. The South Dade Busway, a 20-mile stretch of highway reserved for busses, currently runs from Dadeland to Florida City.

    All Aboard Florida Project

    All Aboard Florida is a sizable project in the works. The $2.5 billion project, a high-speed passenger rail linking downtown Miami to Orlando, is expected to remove up to 3 million cars from Florida’s roads and attract 14,000 riders a day by 2020.

    The privately owned and operated line plans to run 16 round-trip trains a day between Miami and Orlando, with stops in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, covering the 235-mile route in about three hours. Service will start with five four-car trains carrying up to 240 passengers each.

    Downtown’s growing population is a chief impetus for the development. The number of downtown residents grew from 40,000 to 80,000 from 2000 to 2015, according to the Miami Downtown Development Authority. Most of the growth is coming from millennials. Residents ages 25 to 44 comprise half of the downtown’s population.

    Potential Bay Link Project to Connect Miami Beach to the Mainland

    Miami officials are also working on a massive project to link Miami and Miami Beach with rail.

    In February of this year, the long-delayed Bay Link project won a key approval when a board of local officials agreed to pursue the massive project in two parallel plans. Miami Beach is working on a project after it received a proposal from French rail company Alstom. The city is doing an environmental analysis while using the Alstom bid to collect proposals from other firms.

    Connecting South Florida with Rail

    South Florida’s increasing rail options will only make the region more attractive to millennials and national companies looking to relocate here.

    Millennials prefer trains and light rail to cars, according to studies. Uber, Zipcar, public transit are the modes of transportation. Only half of millennials get their driver’s licenses at 18.

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  • Miami: The Best Place to Live, Work and Play

    by | Oct 19, 2016

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    With its oceanfront resort lifestyle and myriad entertainment, fitness and nightclub options, it’s no surprise Miami ranks among the most fun cities in America. According to a new study by Wallet Hub, Miami ranked No. 3 for the most fun cities in America.

    Wallet Hub compared the 150 largest U.S. cities based on 51 key metrics, including restaurants, fitness centers per capita, movie costs and average open hours of breweries. Miami scored well on all of them.

    Miami ranked second in the nation in restaurants per capita and tied for first in fitness centers per capita.

    2016 Most Fun Cities in America

    1. Las Vegas
    2. Orlando
    3. Miami
    4. New Orleans
    5. Salt Lake City
    6. Cincinnati
    7. Fort Lauderdale
    8. St. Louis
    9. Atlanta
    10. Scottsdale

    South Beach
    South Beach is an international capital of late- night fun. Celebrities, athletes, tourists and residents gather here on a nightly basis.

    Greater Miami and the Beaches draws 14.2 million overnight guests a year – with 7.1 million of them int’l visitors. Miami hotels rank fifth in U.S. in occupancy after New York, Oahu Island, San Francisco, & Boston

    Miami’s Urban Core
    Once a quiet 9-to-5 job district, downtown Miami has transformed into one of America’s most exciting, thriving areas.

    A growing population of young professionals are living, working, and playing in downtown, which today boasts the highest concentration of cultural institutions in the Southeast and almost 400 restaurants and bars.

    Downtown Miami’s stunning amount of recent commercial real estate development and world- class cultural additions have helped alter South Florida’s image. South Florida is no longer a resort town known only for its beaches. Today, South Florida is a leading global center with world- class amenities. Several of these amenities sit in downtown along picturesque Biscayne Bay.

    The breathtaking Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts and the internationally-acclaimed Perez Art Museum opened in downtown in 2006 and 2013, respectively. South Florida’s new science wonderland — the $300 million Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science — is being built adjacent to Perez Art. When the science museum opens in the summer of 2016, Downtown Miami will feature three of America’s top cultural facilities, all within close proximity.

    Downtown’s commercial real estate boom has also resulted in more restaurants, hotels, and retail centers. Downtown, which had few stand- alone restaurants 20 years ago, now features 392 restaurants and bars. Several new hotels, including the 54-story Epic Hotel & Residences and the luxury JW Marriott Marquis, and condo buildings have opened within the last six years.

    Downtown’s growing population — 80,000 live in Greater Miami — will have plenty of shopping opportunities as more than 2 million square feet of retail is planned. About half of that retail space belongs to the Miami Worldcenter, which will comprise 27 acres of retail, residential and hospitality uses in the heart of downtown Miami. It’s expected to open in 2017.

    All Aboard Florida, the downtown Miami-to- Orlando passenger train, is also being built with 163,000 square feet of commercial and retail space. When All Aboard Florida starts running trains in 2017, it will only add another dimension to one of America’s fastest evolving downtowns.

    Pro Sports Teams in World-Class Venues
    Basketball’s Miami Heat, baseball’s Miami Marlins and football’s Miami Dolphins have each won championships. The Heat have a long-term lease at their downtown arena; the Marlins recently opened a state-of-the-art, indoor park and the Dolphins’ home stadium has hosted five Super Bowls

    Green Space
    Green space can have a revitalizing impact on properties, particularly underutilized ones. As more users gravitate to dedicated green spaces, more commercial investment follows. When developers improve or build new projects with significant green space, nearby property values are increased and ultimately tax revenue as well

    With that in mind, South Florida developers have plans to add to what is already a significant parks system. Miami-Dade County Parks is the third- largest county park system in the U.S., consisting of 260 parks and 12,825 acres of land.

    The most publicized upcoming project, The Underline, is a proposed 10-mile long bikeway and linear park that will run underneath the Metrorail tracks in Miami-Dade. The Underline will connect several diverse communities from Dadeland South to Brickell, one of the nation’s largest financial districts. It will improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety, create over a hundred acres of open space with restored natural habitats, encourage a healthy lifestyle, provide easily accessible places to exercise, and more. The Underline will increase property values because it will improve the adjacent and connecting property.

    The Underline is often compared to New York City’s High Line, a 1.45-mile long elevated linear park. The High Line had a significant impact on property values. The High Line, which had its first section open to the public in 2009, generated $3 billion in real estate development and an additional $1 billion in tax revenue after its creation. High Line Designer James Corner Field Operations has been hired by Miami-Dade County to design Miami’s Underline.

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