Amid $312 Million Makeover, Crime Could Be an Issue in the Design District
Real estate developer Craig Robins is going all in to transform the Design District into the flossiest destination in Miami. He's investing $312 million to bring in the biggest names in high-end luxury fashion, from Louis Vuitton to Hermès to Céline. To protect that investment, Robins spends 1 million bucks a year on 24-hour security patrolling the Design District, where he owns 65 percent of the land.
That's because wherever big-money spenders go, criminals are sure to follow. This week, New Times probes a series of crimes in the Design District and its surrounding streets and considers how those incidents will affect Robins's plans.
A group of professional shoplifters stole $37,495 worth of merchandise from the temporary Louis Vuitton store at 170 NE 40th St. on November 21 (they also ripped off other Vuitton stores). Since then, there has been a rash of crimes in the Design District and the surrounding area. During one of the robberies, a January 21 heist at Harry's Pizzeria at 3918 N. Miami Ave., a gunman pistol-whipped one of the employees.
Robins insists crime is not a threat to the Design District. "It concerns me to have any incidents occur," he says in the article. "Luxury malls and neighborhoods attract a certain amount of crime. However, we have less crime than other major luxury retail properties in South Florida."
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