Miami's Downtown, Going Once, Twice?

Valued at more than $115 million during the boom, a prominent Hong Kong-based developer has bought the unbuilt Brickell CitiCentre development site for $41.3 million. Similar transactions are happening on other key properties in Miami's downtown.

"Swire Properties, the Hong Kong company that turned a ragged island off downtown Miami into tony Brickell Key, is placing its next South Florida bet.

The developer has snapped up nearly six acres of prime downtown land west of Brickell Avenue. The price tag for the two vacant parcels straddling S. Miami Avenue: $41.3 million.

As many builders and bankers struggle to survive amid the downturn, others are now laying the groundwork for the next upturn -- at cheaper prices.

'While we may not be at the bottom of the market, we felt the discounted pricing made it a good opportunity,' said Stephen Owens, the Miami-based president of Swire Properties. 'A site of this size and scale that's strategically located in the urban area is hard to find.'

Swire's purchase is one of a string of recent deals for raw land in the Brickell area. An Alabama developer recently paid $6.27 million for about half an acre across from the Brickell Metrorail stop with plans to build an Embassy Suites hotel. Separately, a Miami group spent $22 million for another roughly half-acre parcel next to the Four Seasons Tower on Brickell Avenue."

Full Story: Brickell Key developer buys up more prime land

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