Developer Moves to Rezone 4 Grove Isle

Priceless views from Grove Isle

Priceless 4 Grove Isle Club View

The 4 Grove Isle Developer has now submitted an alternative plan for the island to the City of Miami.  The new application mentions a 12 story tower on a development area which excludes the tennis club.  As such, this is a more sophisticated attempt to split the island and test the resolve of the community against further high density development.

Rezoning is required as the project will still not be in keeping with the Miami21 planning regime — a structure which should provide a foundation for real estate decisions.   Furthermore, it is not yet clear what effect this will have on club amenities or how the developer intends to overcome the serious logistic and environmental constraints of the island.

Needless to say local residents, both on and off the island, and the real estate market have been ‘spooked’ by this project.  Perhaps it is also partly responsible for the recent high profile departure from our neighbourhood…

For further detail on this update please click on the of the Board memo image below.  Please also share your insights on this topic in the comment section below.

Grove Isle Board Memo July 24 2014

Grove Isle Board Memo July 24 2014 (click to open)

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Grove Isle mediation update

grove isle negotiator tracker

The Grove Isle Condominium Board recently issued two updates (please click on memo images at end) regarding the status of the mediation process with the developer. The Board entered into these discussions at the suggestion of City of Miami Commissioner Marc Sarnoff. The process has been paused so that far greater information regarding the developer’s proposals and methods are made clear. The Board has yet to receive this information.

Grove Isle Fencing Demolition

The Board has also discovered that the developer has put forward an application to allow the installation of construction fencing associated with the demolition of the Grove Isle Hotel and Club. This move is surprising as it is not yet clear what or where exactly the developer is going to build or demolish.  Some fear that these parallel moves could be construed as a demonstration of bad faith in the mediation process or that this process is not being taken seriously.

Perhaps it would be useful to know what the Officials at Miami City Hall and City of Miami District Commissioner Marc Sarnoff think about of all of this…

Grove Isle Condominium Board Memo of June 20, 2014 (click to open)

Grove Isle Condominium Board Memo of June 20, 2014 (click to open)

Grove Isle Condominium Board Memo of June 27, 2014 (click to open)

Grove Isle Condominium Board Memo of June 27, 2014 (click to open)

 

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GROVE ISLE: One if by land and two if by sea redux

Although there remain many legal, environmental and political issues to be resolved before any development can proceed on Grove Isle, we believe the logistical issues of developing a large new project on the far side of a small island, already with over 500+ residential condominiums, quite daunting. To obtain detailed analysis and expert consideration from a third party removed from this discussion, we queried an experienced construction engineer in order to obtain a professional opinion. The comments made regard either the developer’s Plan A (the tower) or Plan B (five story horizontal development), both of roughly equivalent size. We specifically wished to learn the options that any contractor would have for the demolition phase, the construction phase, and the completion phase.

Grove Isle has long sought to protect its bridge from high weight loads

Grove Isle has long sought to protect its bridge from high weight loads

The challenge is that this is a large project proposed on a very tight, thin and long slice of Grove Isle. This island, connected to the mainland by a two lane causeway that is rated for 15 tons, is fully occupied and the primary residence for many families. Plan A is positioned on the exact opposite side of the island from the causeway entrance. The island is surrounded by Biscayne Bay, and the bay is about 2-4 feet deep within a half mile of the island perimeter except where dredging was performed to approximately eight feet many decades ago in the marina area.

fencing and demolition

Grove Isle demolition and construction threats

Preparation phase: During the preparation phase space for the trucks, supplies, workers’ parking will be reserved and secured. Presumably, chain linked fencing and lighting will be installed to minimize theft and vandalism of construction materials. There will be signage for resident traffic detours, placement of construction trailers, and the need to reserve a large area for outgoing debris and incoming building materials. Given that 4 Grove Isle covers about 40% of the circumference of the island, all of these activities will necessarily be in close proximity of 1, 2 and 3 Grove Isle.

Traffic Issue

Grove Isle Drive provides access to 500 family homes

Demolition phase: During the demolition phase, the existing hotel, club building, spa, roadways, parking structures and other related structures will be demolished, and the debris, asphalt, concrete, glass and metal removed. As a crude estimate, our consultant suggests that this will involve the removal off-island of about 15,000 tons of debris. Given the 15 ton limit of the causeway, approximately 1000 dump truck runs will be required if removal is by land. If removal is by sea, standard dump barges would be used. These barges, which hold about 2400 tons of debris, draw 14 feet of water. Six or seven barges would be required. However, nowhere in Biscayne Bay is the water depth 14 feet. Either a channel would need to be dredged from the ocean to approximately 16 feet deep or many more but much smaller barges that draw considerably less water could be used.  Nonetheless, there is currently no channel to the island to support even medium size barges. See the image of the government chart of Biscayne Bay below. Grove Isle is shown within the large red circle.  A number of the depth readings, also circled in red, are  indicated in feet.

Map showing depth of bay around Grove Isle

Sea grass and the limited depths of Biscayne Bay surround Grove Isle

Construction phase: In this phase, the 18 story tower (Plan A) or multiple lower sized buildings (Plan B) will be constructed on the development site. This involves the building of the foundation, preparation of elevator shafts, and assembly of the steel framework. Next, concrete is poured for floors, and exterior windows and facades installed. When tight to weather, the interior walls are built, and the plumbing, electrical and HVAC installed. Finally, interior walls are tiled or painted, appliances and cabinetry installed, and floors laid with wood, carpet or stone. Modern construction techniques usually perform many of these activities in parallel, from the lower floors to the top floors, in sequence. This entails the delivery to the island and to the construction site specifically of about 30,000 tons of materials, including cement, steel, glass, mechanicals, HVAC, etc. Again, from the analysis above, this will require over 2000 trailer trucks and cement trucks or many specialty barges to accomplish importation of these materials. Furthermore, new roads and parking areas will need to be built.

delivery traffic

The proposed project may involve thousands of journeys to move over 30,000 tons of material on to our island

Completion phase: There will be a “clean up and furnishings phase” where all the construction infrastructure will be removed and the luxury property prepared for sale. Many of these apartments will be custom designed by new owners working with their own group of decorators, contractors and subcontractors. The windows, glass walls, mechanicals, railings, paint and all the interior common furnishings are loaded at this phase. Depending on how well these new units sell, this period could be relatively short (six months) to multiple years. All new residents will need to move in and load their personal furniture and furnishings.

developer dredge biscayne bay

Grove Isle developer dredging threat to Grove Isle and Biscayne Bay

Duration: The duration of this development can be approximated using a construction “time line.” The estimate for a project of this scope, with its attendant logistical issues, is at best 2.5 to 3 years for preparation and building construction. This assumes NO legal or unexpected events, unforeseen environmental issues, and the absence of labor strikes. Custom design and modifications of each unit by their owner could take at least an additional year. If the developer were to obtain all permits necessary to begin construction in early 2016—one and a half years from now—the project would be completed by 2020. In the interim, much of the island would be a construction site. The effect on sales of existing condos is uncertain but there is no reason to believe that construction on this scale would enhance valuations. More likely, turnover of condos during this period would be decreased and price per square foot would diminish. After 2020, valuations become more difficult to predict.

Preserve Grove Isle

Note: All values and statements cited above are based on our opinions and estimates

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Grove Isle Mediation Begins

Long views over Biscayne Bay (Grove Isle May 2012)

Taking the long view over Biscayne Bay (Grove Isle May 2014)

Mediation proceedings finally began today regarding the proposed high density development at 4 Grove Isle.  Representatives of the involved parties including the City of Miami met this morning to begin the process.  It is not yet clear what exactly this non-binding mediation is supposed to deliver.

Separately another potential challenge to Grove Isle’s environment has appeared in the light of the battle to build the Beckham Soccer stadium in downtown Miami.  The City Commissioners have recently approved Resolution 14-00422 which gives the city “the ability to sell or lease submerged lands to buyers who own or have a lease on the contiguous shoreline WITHOUT a referendum.”  The Tropical Audubon Society has been fighting this idea for some time as it “puts Biscayne Bay Aquatic Preserve Resources at risk”.

The resolution’s passing may also impact Grove Isle — as it could help the developer with the dredging task in order to move tens of thousands of tons of material on and off the island.

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Grove Isle Campaign Responds to Neighborhood Concerns

The Preserve Grove Isle campaign (PGI) is responding to local queries regarding the developer’s proposal for the 4 Grove Isle site.  Families living on the island have insisted that PGI share with the neighborhood some of the main concerns regarding the project.

A copy of the document being distributed follows below:

 Urgent Neighborhood Notice

A fourth highrise on Grove Isle has been proposed

Does this affect you?  Should you and your community be involved?

Grove Isle - Coconut Grove - Possible Impact

ONE IF BY LAND, TWO IF BY SEA: An additional development the size of one of the existing buildings on Grove Isle will require demolition of the hotel, spa, restaurant and the importation to the island of the materials for the new building, parking garages, roadways, pools and other amenities — either via S. Bayshore and Fair Isle Drive (LAND) or via barges coming down the channel from Vizcaya (SEA). If the latter, it will be necessary to dredge adjacent to the island in order to bring the barge to the island, given their draft and the depth of the water adjacent to the building site (click to enlarge image).

Although the sale of this property and its proposed development has been kept secret from our community, our goal has been to make the plan, its legal basis and its details transparent so that the communities impacted may participate in relevant discussions.

The detail: a developer wants to demolish Grove Isle’s club, boutique hotel, restaurant, lounge, spa and pool, in favor of an ultra-modern glass and concrete 18 story building on the northeast side of the island.

Video of meeting the neighborhood

Information campaign regarding 4 Grove Isle Project begins in the North Grove

We thought you would like to be aware that the proposal will likely:

  • cause as much as 2-3 years of severe disruption and inconvenience with many tens of thousands of tons of material being moved either by land or by sea requiring thousands of heavy truck movements and/or barges & dredging having a significant negative impact on the ecology of our marine environment, including manatee habitat.
how much does your building weigh mr avila?

Tens of thousands of tons will have to be moved in a highly restricted and sensitive environment

  • cause damage and inconvenience from demolition dust and debris, pile driving, deep escavations, and construction noise. This will negatively impact local houses, boats, porches, and trees.
  • further slow traffic on and access to South Bayshore Drive – especially during the construction phase. This will further impact access to the Coconut Grove Business District. It may require construction workers & subcontractors to use street parking in the neighborhood (off island).
South Bayshore Drive traffic and construction related street parking

North Grove: South Bayshore Drive traffic / construction related street parking

  •  Lead to the privatization of the island, excluding non-residents from use of the club and other amenities.

We have made legal progress with the city to the point that this development plan is on hold for further review. This gives us and the wider community time to reflect on the full impact of this development proposal on the residents of the island, of North Coconut Grove and Coconut Grove in general and to make our voices heard.

Many existing residents and neighbors are fighting the developer’s plan and have given us, the “Preserve Grove Isle” movement, their support to carry our message to the Coconut Grove neighborhoods and civic associations. Our opinion poll shows that the majority of residents of the island are against all high density development.

Please contact us to help stop or at least shape what is being proposed for our neighborhood via our e-mail address:

savegroveisle@outlook.com

Tell us how your neighborhood could participate in this issue and control its impact on the north grove.  Please take a moment to object to the proposal by writing letters to Miami and environmental officials immediately.

CITY OF MIAMI
Mayor Tomas Regalado: tregalado@miamigov.com 3500 Pan American Drive, Miami, Florida 33133
District 2 Commissioner Marc Sarnoff: msarnoff@miamigov.com 3500 Pan American Drive, Miami, Florida 33133 305-250-5333

Assistant City Manager: Alice Bravo (abravo@miamigov.com) Planning Director Francisco Garcia: fgarcia@miamigov.com 444 SW 2nd Avenue, 3rd Floor Miami, Florida 33130 305-416-1470 General Number for Planning Department: 305-416-1400

Assistant Director: Luciana Gonzalez (LGonzalez@miamigov.com )

Zoning Chief: Paula De Carolis (pauladecarolis@miamigov.com )

Zoning Administrator Irene Hegedus: ishegedus@miamigov.com 444 SW 2nd Avenue, 4th Floor Miami, Florida 33130 305-416-1491

Land Development, Chief Antonio E. Perez (AEPerez@miamigov.com) 444 SW 2nd Ave 3rd Floor Miami, FL 33130

FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
Biscayne Bay Environmental Center – Pamela Sweeney 305-795-3486
Biscayne.Bay@dep.state.fl.us

MIAMI-DADE DERM
Sean McCrackine 305-372-6789
mccras@co.miami-dade.fl.us

TROPICAL AUDUBON SOCIETY
Laura Reynolds & Susan Shapiro 305-667-7337
biscbaycoalition@tropicalaudubon.org

 

URGENT NOTICE IMAGE

Urgent North Grove Neighborhood Notice regarding 4 Grove Isle

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

Grove isle was planned in the 1970’s, built in the early 1980’s, and has remained unchanged for the past 30+ years. This developer believes that a settlement for development with the city of Miami in 1977 that allowed construction of what is currently on the island now allows the demolition of the hotel and building of a new highrise tower under zoning laws operative at the time of the settlement. Others now contest that any development, if any at all is allowed, must conform to current zoning laws—Miami 21. It is crucial that a robust public planning review process under Miami 21 is undertaken whereby the developer is required to provide all the requisite information so that the planning department and the public have an opportunity to review and comment on that information. This is a legal matter that is currently in dispute.

Demolition Grove Isle must write to officials

The proposed 4 Grove Isle project has wide implications for the North Grove & Coconut Grove in general.

 

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Grove Isle briefed by legal advisors on development threat

Rowing on Biscayne Bay - Grove Isle

Ready to pull hard as crew sets off near Grove Isle

Attorneys representing our Association and working with the Board, presented their thoughts on the proposed development on Grove Isle and the status of on-going litigation to the Association members that were able to attend on Monday evening.  This meeting was well attended and the presentation enlightening.  In initial comments, Gilberto Pastoriza of Weiss Serota confirmed that he was hired by the Association to investigate the legal basis for the rapid development of the tower proposal (now known as Plan A) by the current owners of 4 Grove Isle, with Mr. Avila as the spokesperson for this consortium.

82v4t

Gilberto Pastoriza of Weiss Serota briefs residents on the developer’s proposals for Grove Isle

Mr Pastoriza emphasized that this development, unbeknownst to the members of the Association, was on a fast track for approval by the city.  “The train was going full speed.  Our job was to stop the train.”  Indeed, with their preparation of the Memorandum questioning the legality of vested rights from the Settlement of 1977 and its distribution to city officials, the developer’s plan is now on hold by the City. This presentation, which was in depth, was successful and informational.  They mentioned that there are various points of view from Association members, including those most concerned about amenities, those most concerned about protracted construction, and those most concerned about any construction on Grove Isle in general.

82vd6+

John Lukacs of Hinshaw & Culbertson updates residents regarding the Association’s successful appeal

It also became clear that the Association members are dependent on a second party, the owners of 4 Grove Isle, to provide them most of the amenities that the Association enjoys (e.g. tennis courts, fitness center/spa, restaurant) and yet the owners, who operate these facilities at a profit, may (or may not—that is a legal issue) have the right to discontinue such amenities.  Mr. Avila’s Plan B includes discontinuation of many of the amenities that the Association members have enjoyed over the past 30+ years but is said to be within the current zoning ordinances of Miami 21.  In addition, John Lukacs of Hinshaw & Culbertson, who also represents the Association, discussed the reversal by the appellate court of the pending suit by the Association against the Club (i.e. 4 Grove Isle), and this suit will be litigated once again, hopefully to the advantage of the Association and its members.

Appeal Report Image

The pending suit by the Association against the Club (i.e. 4 Grove Isle) will likely be litigated once again

The lawyers claimed that the Association members on Grove Isle do NOT have to choose between two bad choices, Plan A (the tower) versus Plan B (5 five story buildings occupying much of the land that is owned by the developer). They emphasized that we have other options….and we, the residents of Grove Isle, are empowered to decide what we want for our future here.

It is now clear from the predictions of the recent poll that a majority of the residents on the island want no development based on what they have seen and heard. “The Grove Isle opinion poll continues to assess the views of Association members and is surpassing our expectations.”  It seems as the entire island is waking up to the fact that they really enjoy this island “the way it is”.  Like the old adage, “you take your health for granted until you lose it,” we don’t always appreciate something important in our lives—including the ambience of Grove Isle–until we are about to lose it.

We will be headed for a requested mediation (non binding) with the city, the developer and Grove Isle representatives on 21 April.  It is very possible that this start date may be delayed.  We feel that this mediation will expose the “no further development position” to all, based upon the opinion poll in progress.

Please keep your letters and e-mails going out to the Miami administrators and elected officials….they are very valuable.  You will find this info on this site at this location (click here).

Thank you for the many, many comments and opinions on this PGI website.  It shows the interest and unity of the Grove Isle residents.  It is times such as this that bring a community together.

You may also now follow developments and share information regarding our island on Facebook and Google+. Click on the icons below for a link to these sites.

Facebook Connect Link

Connect with Facebook

Google+ Button

Add Google+

 

 

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Board provides update regarding 2009 litigation case

The Grove Isle Condominium Board today issued an update on the status of the litigation that was initiated in July 2009.  This litigation addresses 

  • the private versus public character of the Grove Isle Club facilities and the accessibility of Grove Isle to non-residents and non-members of the Grove Isle Club
  • the assessment of annual Club dues as apposed to the initial membership fee provided for in the Declaration of Condominium
  • the Association’s responsibility for the payment of total costs and expenses for maintaining, managing, and operating the bridge, gatehouse, security systems, roadways, and other amenities including providing security service and lighting for the benefit of all Grove Isle. 

Recently a three-judge panel of the Third District Court of Appeal said the Grove Isle Association lawsuit was wrongfully dismissed with prejudice by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge John SchlesingerPlease see the attached document from the Board to read further about the current status of this case (please click on image to open document).

Grove Isle Condo Association Memo - 3 April 2014

Grove Isle Condo Association Memo – 3 April 2014 (click on image to open)

 

 

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Campaign seeks residents opinion on developer proposal

Grove Isle is in Coconut Grove

Preserve Grove Isle

Dear Fellow Neighbors

We are all getting bombarded with lots of information about the potential changes of our wonderful island home.   We are delighted that residents are very interested in our future. For this reason we would like to get a sense of how YOU feel.

To accomplish this goal one of your neighbors will come around to ask your opinion YES or NO in terms of whether you wish to have any high density construction on the island or not. We all realize that this topic is of paramount importance to the future life style and setting of Grove Isle.

Please note that the Condominium Association lawyers will present an information meeting for all Grove Isle owners on Monday 7 April.  Further information regarding this is included in the document attached below.

Grove Isle Condo Association Memo - 1 April 2014

Grove Isle Condo Association Memo – 1 April 2014 (click image to open)

Thank you for your support to protect our Grove Isle.  Please check the communication section for all the latest thoughts, information and developments regarding our collective home.

 

 

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Grove Isle Board distributes lawyers’ memorandum of 3/25

The Grove Isle Condominium Association Board has forwarded residents a copy of the latest memorandum from their lawyers Weiss Serota Helfman.  It is based on conclusions regarding the developer’s presentation at the Club last week.  They added that Commissioner Sarnoff has asked for non-binding mediation between the Grove Isle Association and the developer. The City Attorney is to wait for completion of this mediation process before rendering a new Opinion Letter.   A meeting with Grove Isle owners and our Association attorneys is now being organised.  Residents will be advised of details of a possible meeting early next week.

The Board also confirmed that the Florida Appellate Court on Wednesday revived the Association lawsuit against the previous developer and Club operator. The attorneys are preparing a review of the case that will also be distributed to residents next week.   Please check the communication section for additional information on this topic.

25 March Memorandum from Weiss Serota Attorneys
25 March Memorandum from Weiss Serota Attorneys (click image to open)
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Preserve Grove Isle presents case to Coconut Grove Village Council

Grove Isle Presents to Coconut Grove Village Council

Preserve Grove Isle presents to Coconut Grove Village Council

Chuck Kaplanek from The Preserve Grove Isle Organization delivered a slide show presentation to the monthly meeting of the Coconut Grove Village CouncilInterested parties and officials from throughout Coconut Grove heard, firsthand, about the proposed development plan and the large opposition to it.  Many supportive ideas were discussed and these will be added to the planning and progress of the “Preserve Grove Isle” project.  The residents’ legal rights and opinions will help shape the future of Grove Isle.

The Grove Isle Condominium Association Board has also issued a communication that their lawyers have been studying the developer’s presentation.  A copy of  the Board’s letter is attached below (please click to open) and a report is expected by the end of the week.

Grove Isle Condo Assoc Memo 25 March 2014

Grove Isle Condo Assoc Memo 25 March 2014

Please also check the latest comments from our readers.

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Grove Isle Association issues clarification regarding development presentation

A copy of the latest memorandum from the Grove Isle Condominium Association re the developer’s presentation is attached for your information.   To read the memo please click the image below.

Grove Isle Condo Assoc Memo 19 March 2014

Grove Isle Condo Assoc Memo 19 March 2014

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Coconut Grove Village Council to be updated on Grove Isle developments

Preserve Grove Isle is expanding its information base regarding this unpopular Grove Isle development to our friends and neighbors in “The Grove”.   Background regarding the proposal will be discussed at the next  Coconut Grove Village Council meeting.  This is scheduled to take place on Tuesday March 25th  at Frankie Rolle building [3750 South Dixie Highway] at 7pm.

Coconut Grove Council Meeting

Coconut Grove Council Meeting Agenda – March 25, 2014

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Preserve Grove Isle: Meeting to discuss developer plans scheduled for March 20th at 6pm

The owner/developer of Grove Isle 4 and his architect, RTKL, will make a presentation showing the proposed 18 story, high rise tower and an alternative plan showing new condominiums in several 5 storey buildings replacing the hotel, restaurant, lounge, deck, club pool, spa, and many of the tennis courts.

Grove Isle Condo Assoc Memo 13 March 2014

Grove Isle Condo Association meeting now scheduled for 6pm on 20 March 2014

In connection with this presentation, please be aware of the following:

1.  The developer has no approvals to construct any new buildings on the Grove Isle 4 property at this time. It has not been determined, based on various legal agreements executed in 1977-1979  by the developer and others, when Grove Isle was initially developed and based on a recent memorandum of law prepared by our attorneys, that the developer has the right to expand the development on the Grove Isle 4 property.

2. The alternative plan layout you will see on Thursday is based on a series of 5 story buildings, which will cover MOST of the 4 Grove Isle property. We believe that plan will be purposely drawn to be extremely unattractive and therefore unacceptable to the Grove Isle Residents so that the proposed 18 storey high rise tower becomes the “preferred” plan.

Therefore, it is important to understand that both plans may be unacceptable to Grove Isle residents and various legal documents and agreements may prevent either development concept from being constructed.

3.  These two opposite and radical plans do NOT conform to Grove Isle or its surrounding neighborhood.

It’s time for the developer and the Board of Directors to put our current resident’s “well being” and “character” of our island ahead of corporate monetary interests.

Using current land use laws, compromise, and transparency are always more productive than this type of forceful, and deceptive tactics.

We hope that a satisfactory negotiated compromise can be openly reached.

Memo Image

Grove Isle Memorandum Regarding Developer Plan A and B

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Miami Herald: “Grove Isle condo owners upset about plans for fourth tower”

Grove Isle Residents unhappy with development

Miami Herald — Grove Isle Residents unhappy with development (March 7, 2014)

The Miami Herald has now picked up on our 4 Grove Isle situation. The story was published on the “front page” of the Miami Herald’s Business section today!  This is a giant step in spreading and explaining our deep concerns regarding this proposed construction.  Notably, it confirms that the City of Miami has NOT made ANY decisions regarding our island.

Thank you for all of your continued support and concern for the future of our GROVE ISLE.
comment bulldozer image
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Preserve Grove Isle Committee responds to developer (Grove Isle Associates) e-mail dated 27 February 2014

AERIAL VISTA OF THE THREE RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS ON GROVE ISLE

AERIAL VISTA OF THE THREE RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS ON GROVE ISLE (click image to open video)

The recent email and letter (of 27 February 2014) sent to every owner/member of the Grove Isle Club by the new developer was replete with omissions and inaccuracies.

THE TRUTH

1. Their architect’s computer image is inaccurate as to the distance between buildings 3 and the proposed new 18 story glass and concrete high-rise. They have portrayed the distance as a substantial distance when, in fact, these plans call for the proposed building to be 40% closer to building 3 than building 3 is to building 2.

2. The developer DOES NOT presently enjoy a right to construct a residential tower on the island. Neither the City nor any court has made a determination that there is a right to develop as of this time.

3. The former deputy City Attorney (in February 13, 2013) did not state that the development group has the right to build what it presented. She merely commented on a letter espousing one view of governing documents. That argument and her position on it is currently under-re-evaluation by the City Attorney’s office based on our attorneys’ well-reasoned memorandum of law. Any development will not depend solely on the City Attorney, however, since it is the Planning, Zoning, and Building departments that make those decisions after following various administrative procedures, many of which are subject to appeal to the Planning and Zoning Appeals Board and the City Commission. None of this has occurred yet.

4. The developer is interested in doing what is BEST for the developer and not for Grove Isle #1, #2 or #3, and its existing 510 apartments It is beyond naïve to think that the developer is truly concerned about long time Grove Isle residents. He is concerned with maximizing his economic return on his $24 million investment. He should be aware that the gross value of the existing apartments on Grove Isle is well over $400 million dollars!

5. The developer has not submitted plans for new club facilities (or tennis courts). Rather, he depicted a rendering of a club room and state “Subject to Change”. How can anyone rely on a developer who fails to advise and show all of his plans in advance? Why not reveal exactly what they plan on building?

6. The developer’s threat of building more units if we don’t agree with his plans is merely an attempt to bully and threaten Grove Isle owners. Any proposal would have to be reviewed by the City’s Planning and Zoning Department. No such proposal has been submitted or reviewed.

7. The developer will not get the City or a Court to approve another 445 units. These threats from the developer must stop!!! If you want to be our Grove Isle neighbor, act like one and stop your threatening tactics.

8. There are numerous other issues that the developer will have to address before proceeding, that go beyond zoning and planning and land usage:

a. What happens to our bridge when heavy construction vehicles cross it?
b. How do they remove hundreds of tons of debris from Grove Isle?
c. How will they deliver hundreds of tons of building materials such as concrete, steel and glass?
d. How many parking spaces will Grove Isle #1, #2 and #3 lose with this construction and thereafter?
e. How does the developer’s plan impact our traffic and South Bayshore Drive traffic?
f. What does DERM have to say about this project?
g. Will this plan comply with sewer, water and other City issues?
h. How will this construction match or fit with existing structures? Will the tropical “state of the island” be lost?
i. Honestly, how long will this project take……we feel 2 years minimum.

The entire development approval process has many different paths. The length of time to complete this process is uncertain under normal circumstances, and will be made more so if the Grove Isle Association and residents are uncooperative. We feel we are in the beginning stages of what could end up being a protracted process. The developer’s only hope of developing within a reasonable period of time is to negotiate with us and ultimately provide a mutually satisfactory solution.

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