With a population of just over 300, the city of Miami was officially incorporated on July 28, 1896. Today, according to the US Census Bureau, Miamiâ€™s greater metropolitan area has an estimated population of over 5.5 million.
Miami â€“ A Global Financial Center
According to the Global Cities Index 2010, in terms of finance, commerce, entertainment, the arts and international trade, Miami ranks thirty-third among global cities. So what does Miami need to become a major global financial center?
First, we need tax incentives to stimulate local employment by encouraging the growth and relocation of regional and transnational enterprises. Second, we need to have the infrastructure in place to support a vibrant local economy, international trade and tourism. Third, we need the local technical expertise to support the international banking, finance and trade industries. Fourth, we need continued migration to our area, which results in the formation of new households.
In many respects, Miami is positioning itself for future growth and development on a local, regional and international level. Yes, one may argue that our current growth plan is political and lacks a long-term, sustainable and financially responsible strategy. However, there have been a number of recent successes and economic indicators that represent very positive changes for Miami.
Miami 21 â€“ â€œMiami of the 21st Centuryâ€
Miami 21 is a new vision for the City that will be supported by specific zoning and planning guidelines to make each area within Miami a â€œunique, vibrant place to live, learn, work and play.â€ According to Miami 21, there are six elements that form the backbone in the development of Miami: Miami 21 Zoning Code, Economic Development, Historic Preservation, Parks and Open Spaces, Arts and Culture, and Transportation.
The Miami 21 Zoning Code is a form based code with emphasis on the â€œrelationship between the street and buildings, pedestrian and vehicles, public and private spaces, and the relationship between multiple buildings, a block, a neighborhood, and transitions in scale.â€ Even if you are not a city planner, the fact that we are moving from a density to a form based zoning code which promotes walk-ability, transit, and mixed-use activities, is a very big step for the city of Miami.
Port of Miami â€“ Dredging to 50 feet
Miami is often referred to as the â€œCargo Gateway of the Americasâ€ and â€œCruise Capital of the Worldâ€. In three years, or August 2014, the Panama Canal will be able to accommodate ships that are significantly larger than todayâ€™s vessels. These so-called â€œPanamaxâ€ ships will require deep harbors of at least 50 feet to dock and handle their cargo.
The Port of Miami plans to be one of only three U.S. seaports on the eastern seaboard that can handle the post-Panamax cargo ships. The Florida Department of Transportation has been directed by Governor Scott to loan the Port of Miami $77 million for the deep dredging project. Along with the Port of Miami Tunnel Project and the U.S. Department of Transportationâ€™s $22.7 million grant to restore rail service between the Port and the Florida East Coast Rail Yard, the deep dredge project is a major investment in the future of the entire South Florida region.
Miami International Airport (MIA) â€“ Setting New Records
Miami International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the world and served 35.7 million passengers in 2010. During the first quarter of this year, MIA served a record 9.3 million passengers which is a 6.1 percent increase over the same period last year. Not only did we set a new milestone in passenger traffic in 2010, but MIA also experienced a 20 percent increase in total international cargo to 1,785,862 tons, plus a 5 percent increase in domestic cargo as well.
Since adopting a master plan for the capital improvement of MIA, the City and County has invested over $6 billion to significantly expand and upgrade the terminals, expand the airfield to four runaways, new taxiways and taxi lanes, two new fire stations, seventeen new cargo buildings, sub-surface utility infrastructure, a new South Terminal, the MIA Rental Car Center / MIA Mover, and expanded connections to surrounding highways.
South Florida Global Trade â€“ Over $100bn in 2011
According to Tony Ojeda, the executive director of the Miami-Dade Office of Economic Development and International Trade, a total of $95.3 billion in imports and exports moved through the Miami Customs district last year. This represents a 20.9 percent increase over 2009 and is expected to exceed $100 billion inÂ 2011.
Several companies have recently announced that they will be expanding in the region. For example, AeroPost International Services, announced that they will be moving from their existing 37,800 SF warehouse in Doral to a 176,348 SF warehouse in the Blue Lagoon area just south of MIA. According to WorldCity, Brazil ranked as the Miami Customs districtâ€™s number one trading partner at $13.4 billion last year, and was followed by Colombia at $6.8 billion and Switzerland at $5.4 billion.
Miami Population â€“ Positive Growth
According to theÂ U.S. Census Bureau 2010 report, over the past decade Floridaâ€™s population increased by over 2.8 million, or 17.6 percent, to 18.8 million. The South Florida region of Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Broward Counties, increased to over 5.5 million residents, of which approximately 2.5 million reside in Miami-Dade County.Â During the same period, Miami-Dade County experienced a 10.8 percent increase from approximately 2.25 to 2.5 million.
There are a few demographic shifts within Miami-Dade County that are mostly representative of the condo boom over the past decade. For example, Aventuraâ€™s population increasedÂ by 41 percent to 35,762 residents; Key Biscayne increased by 17.5 percent to 12,344 residents; Sunny Isles Beach increased by 36 percent to 20,832 residents; and the City of Miami increased 10.2 percent to 399,457 residents.
International Visitation and Spending
According to data provided by the Greater Miami Convention Visitors Bureau, Miami has experienced a significant increase in passenger arrivals through Miami International Airport and the Port of Miami over the past decade. In fact, in 2010 we experienced a higher number of arrivals than at the peak in 2008 at both ports of entry. The top five domestic markets of origin were New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Boston and Atlanta. The top five international markets of origin were Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia and Germany.
The average room rate for hotels etched up to $144.13, or 2.8 percent, in 2010 over 2009. In addition, the average hotel occupancy rate increased by 7.9 percent during the same period. Through March this year, we have also experienced an increase in hotel occupancy of 2.9 percent. In 2010, Miami ranked fourth in the nation behind New York, Oahu Island and San Francisco, in terms of hotel occupancy. In terms of visitor spending, while Miami experienced a jump in collection of Food and Beverage Taxes and Resort Taxes in 2010 versus 2009, we still remain at a level slightly below that of 2008.
Brickell CitiCentre â€“ a Mega Mall in Downtown Miami
Swire Properties Inc., a multinational development company and developer of 5.9 million square feet residential, office and hotel properties in Miami, recently announced plans to develop Brickell CitiCentre. The developer has acquired a site that consists of 247,000 square feet and plans to develop a 4.6 million square foot â€œmega mallâ€ near the Miami River and Mary Brickell Village.
The project will consist of five high rise towers that will offer a variety of mixed uses including retail, office, residential (apartments or condo) and hotel. As a proven developer in Miami with several successful developments already under their belt, including Jade Residences and Mandarin Oriental hotel, this is a very positive announcement for the future of downtown Miami.
According to local news sources, the four year development project will provide up to 1,700 construction jobs as well as 4,000 permanent jobs and $15 million in annual tax revenues. Additionally, this project is slated to be the largest single private works project in the U.S. over the next few years.
Latin America â€“ an Emerging Consumer Class
Since the 1980â€²s, Miami has been considered a safe haven and highly desirable city for Latin America and Central Americaâ€™s wealthy. While we experience an ebb and flow of flight capital from these countries, the flow has been particularly evident over the past two years.
In study completed by Prudential Real Estate Investors in late 2010, they predict that â€œthe consumer class in emerging markets is set to grow rapidly in size and economic significance over the next decade.â€ In fact, approximately â€œtwo-thirds will come from the six largest emerging market economies: China, Brazil, India, Mexico, Russia and Turkey.â€
This dramatic increase in purchasing power of the consumer class within these countries, and others, including Colombia, Chile, Argentina and Ecuador, will have a continued positive effect on the Miami economy.
Miami â€“ a Bright Future
Clearly we are facing several head winds in Miami. A shadow inventory of foreclosures, unemployment, excessive debt, mortgage and medicare fraud, to name a few. It may take us years to see a complete rebound in the greater Miami metropolitan area housing market. However, there are pockets within Miami and Miami Beach that one can argue have already turned around. Additionally, the long term economic fundamentals look very positive for our City.
Are you looking for a Miami or Miami Beach property at a deep discount? Are you looking for a discounted short sale or bank owned property? Ross Milroy of Miami Angel Properties, LLC may be reached at 305-673-5300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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