North Beach could become home to up to hundreds
During yesterday's Land Use and Development meeting, committee members approved doubling the number of such units allowed in plans for the North Beach Town Center to 624. The units are just over twice the size of Canada's smallest legal jail cells.
The number of such tiny apartments had previously been capped at 312 due to concerns over increased traffic, but City Manager Jimmy Morales told committee members most micro-units will probably have only one resident, so won't cause serious crowding.
Tiny living is an integral part of the commission's long-awaited North Beach redevelopment plan, which allows units between 375 and 550 square feet in a ten-block area along 71st Street. City commissioners believe the smaller units could help draw new residents.
"Because of the expensive cost of real estate and rents, and rising building costs, it's becoming more and more expensive to live in Miami Beach," Commissioner John Aleman tells New Times. "
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The area where the town center is set to be developed currently contains retail plazas, vacant lots, and an apartment building. It's been slated for redevelopment for at least three decades.
Under the current plan, the North Beach Town Center would become a "live-work-play" hub — a
In North Beach, the smallest micro-unit would be nearly three times that size. Aleman says that with nearby attractions including the O Cinema Miami Beach, the North Beach Bandshell, and the beach, plus the new town center, living small should be an attractive option. "People don't mind living in a smaller unit if, when they go outside, there are all kinds of wonderful things to do," she says.