Undeterred by the real-estate downturn, Maclee Development will propose Empire World Towers the Miami City Commission this week. Empire World Towers is of a new class of super-tall skyscrapers and would rise 93 stories over Biscayne Boulevard across from Bayside Marketplace in Miami, Florida.
The project would take these buildings up over the 1,000-foot threshold, a rare height in the United States outside of New York and Chicago. Another project already approved by the commission is Miami developer Tibor Hollo’s One Bayfront Plaza, a 1,008-foot glass office tower resembling a twisting, billowing mainsail. The $1.8 billion project, which also includes a shorter hotel tower, would replace an existing 19-story ”high-rise” at 100 S. Biscayne Blvd. Both mega-towers would exceed Miami’s current height champ, the 4-year-old, 789-foot Four Seasons Hotel & Tower on Brickell Avenue, by more than 200 feet.
Both developers say they fully intend to build. Because of their size and complexity, both projects would take years to design, review, and construct. They wouldn’t be finished until the mid-2010s, allowing plenty of time for the sagging market to rebound, the developers say.
The projects have raised few objections, aside from concerns over increased traffic. Both are designed to be pedestrian-friendly, concealing massive parking garages and service areas behind screens of shops and offices. In addition, Hollo’s project would be certified as green.
”I’m not going for the tallest building,” Hollo says. “I was looking for a lasting design. I’m hoping, I am trusting, we have done that.”