David Lombardi Talks Wynwood Cafe District

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

The Wynwood Cafe District is a zoning effort on the part of business leaders, residents, artists, real estaters, and local government to promote foodlife and nightlife in Wynwood by allowing liquor license clusters, and waiving parking requirements. Before the Wynwood Cafe District was founded, liquor licenses had to be a certain distance in feet apart from each other -- something like 1,500 -- and restaurants had to have on site parking, a heavy added cost for those converting warehouses to eateries.

Broker David Lombardi says, "We wanted to try and create a synergy, a strength. The center of the district is Joey's. That's where they want everything to pop up. The cafe district is zoned from 22nd to 27th streets between NW Second and Fifth Avenues. On 23rd through 25th Streets, it starts west from NW First Avenue.

"The thing about Wynwood versus the Design District for doing a restaurant is that the rent is so much cheaper here."

But your stake in it is to get people in here, raise the property value and charge higher rent, right?

"Of course. That's not some big secret you uncovered. I'm a capitalist. I been sitting in this fucking neighborhood for nine years. When I got here in 2000, the rents were five or six dollars a square foot. In nine years they've only doubled. That's not such a big jump as the 20 to 40 double that happened in the Design District. It costs the same to build here, but if your rent is a third of the price, then your bottom line is gonna be that much fatter."

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.