A joint venture between the Soffer and LeFrak real estate families has closed on a $22 million deal to buy 55 acres of land from the city of North Miami.
The deal is part of a plan to redevelop the 183-acre site formerly known as Biscayne Landing and now called SoLē Mia. The first phase of the project will include two 200-unit rental buildings, a 10-acre swimming lagoon and a retail center. It will ultimately include 4,000 residential units, one million square feet of commercial and office space, 37 acres of parks and a hotel, and could take 15 years and between $3 billion and $4 billion to build.
Previous developers have tried and failed for 50 years to build on the land, which for many years was a federal Superfund site. The joint venture, called Oleta Partners, was responsible for removing contaminated soil from the site and will be tasked with any future environmental cleanup.
Construction has already begun on a road through the site and the land deal brings the development one step closer to reality. The developers signed a 99-year lease on the entire site late last year but didn’t own any of the property outright until now. They are putting down about $4 million in cash with the rest of the sale price covered in financing from the city. Owning the land will make it easier for the developers to sell condos.
This story has been updated to clarify when environmental cleanup at Biscayne Landing took place.
Miami Herald staff writer Lance Dixon contributed to this report.