Miami-Dade County

Miami’s offer to sell river HQ, lease new office draws two suitors

Miami Riverside Center located at 444 SW Second Ave.
Miami Riverside Center located at 444 SW Second Ave.

Having outgrown an administrative headquarters on the river, Miami’s city government is looking to move to a new office building and sell its current facility.

But despite the location on the water, only two companies have shown interest.

Lancelot Miami River LLC, led by Michael Adler of Adler Group, and Panther Capital LLC, led by Aaron, Jason and Lawrence Adler, submitted bids to the city by a 2 p.m. Monday deadline. Lancelot Miami River owns property next to the city’s headquarters.

A spokeswoman for Adler Group said the company has no affiliation with Panther Capital.

The companies’ bids are sealed, so it’s also unclear what exactly they proposed. The city gave bidders the option to buy its three-acre campus at 444 SW Second Ave., build the city a new administrative headquarters or renovate an existing building, or offer to do both.

The city is looking to move out of its administrative headquarters because its staff has outgrown the building, according to Miami officials. Administrators have been talking about selling their administrative hub, built by FPL in 1992, since at least last summer. In exchange, they hoped a developer interested in the property would also agree to build a new, custom-designed 375,000-square-foot office building.

The city hired real estate firm CBRE to help draw interest in both the headquarters sale and acquisition of new property.

“We’re not building the Taj Mahal,” Shay Pope, CBRE senior vice president, told bidders during a public conference in April.

Miami officials offered developers two sites on which to build a new building: land next to Marlins Park in Little Havana, and next to the Lyric Theater in Overtown.

Miami officials hoped to move into their new building by the spring of 2019 after potentially selling and then leasing back the current riverside headquarters for two or three years. But first, the city’s administration needs to vet proposals, seek approval from Miami commissioners, and then hold a voter referendum before selling any public, waterfront land.

This article was corrected to show that Lancelot Miami River is led by Michael Adler of Adler group. The company has no affiliation with Adler Companies, according to a spokeswoman.