Real Estate

New York Post Claims Edgewater Was Full of "Vagrants" Until Hero Developers Came Along

Months if not years late to the story, the New York Post decided to check in this weekend on development in Edgewater.

According to the Post's take, the area was full of "vagrants" before and is now quickly turning into some family friendly area where actual Miamians will live and play.

The story starts with Mckafka Development, who owned land in the area before realizing it was turning into Miami's next hot spot.

The two men planned on putting up a modest residential rental building with units that would go for $350 to $450 per month.

Instead, after Related Group announced their entrance into the neighborhood, Mckafka decided to build their own luxury building: The Crimson. But did they really have plans to build ultra-cheap rentals in the first place? Knowing full well what the rent was in older condo buildings located in the same area, not to mention smaller units in older homes, there is absolutely no way anyone was actually planning to build brand-new construction with rentals going for as little $350.

Then, in the spring of that year, something unexpected happened. Jorge Pérez, the largest and most successful developer of luxury condominiums in Miami, announced plans for his Related Group to develop 2.15 acres of Edgewater's bay front property into luxury condominiums.

Edgewater's development is not completely unexpected. The southern areas of the neighborhood had already been developed with towers during the real estate boom in the early 2000s before the housing market crashed. It's not exactly a surprise that developers (many of them the same) would pick up exactly where they left off. In fact, just later in the article the author writes, "Anyone who's surprised by the neighborhood's rapid ascent shouldn't be." OK.

Construction drove away packs of vagrants and Edgewater suddenly seemed blessed.

Like many urban areas in the Biscayne Corridor, there were plenty of homeless people wandering through. Though, they never seem to travel in "packs." The thing is they're also still there. There are still plenty of people sleeping outdoors just blocks from all of this new construction. I saw about four during a walk to a bodega last night.

The article, of course, completely ignores the people who were (and still are) actually living in this particular are of Edgewater before the most recent boom: Latin families and young professionals who work in areas like Wynwood and the Design District who can't quite afford $2,000-a-month for rent in a luxury condo building (i.e. most of them).

Santiago Rodríguez Tarditi, a 29-year-old TV journalist, recently moved to Miami from New York City. He pays $2,000 per month for a one-bedroom in a condo building called Quantum on the Bay, at 1900 N Bayshore Drive, about eight blocks south of the new construction. Tarditi says, "The neighborhood feels like a small, up-and-coming city. While there is still some grit, I spent last night playing volleyball in a park until 10 p.m. It's a little quiet, but the place is waiting to be developed."

Yes, a "small, up-and-coming city" that is really just the continuation of what is already the third-biggest skyline in the United States. A "small, up-and-coming city" where residents are five minutes from an NBA arena and a short walk from one of the largest performing arts centers in the South.

The Post also barely mentions the fact that many units are being bought up by foreign buyers more as investments than places to actually live full time.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Kyle Munzenrieder