Swire Breaks Ground on Brickell CitiCentre MXD in Miami

Swire Properties, of Hong Kong, broke ground yesterday on its $1.1 billion, nine-acre, mixed-use Brickell CitiCentre in downtown Miami's Brickell financial district.

Swire Properties, of Hong Kong, broke ground yesterday on its $1.1 billion, nine-acre, mixed-use Brickell CitiCentre in downtown Miami’s Brickell financial district.

The first phase, to be completed by 2015, will comprise the bulk of the project: 520,000 square feet of retail, two office buildings, two residential towers and a 243-room hotel with 93 service apartments. The third and final office tower will follow in 2018. Total buildout will be about 2.9 million square feet.

The architect is Arquitectonica, of Miami.

According to press reports, Swire announced earlier this year that it had received a $140 million credit facility from HSBC Bank USA to fund design and initial development and construction costs.

When the project was announced last February, Swire chief executive Martin Cubbon commented, Miami’s economy is benefiting from investments from its southern neighbours in South America, and we see strong growth potential for the city. The location of Brickell CitiCentre offers an excellent opportunity to attract business both from local businesses and residents as well as visitors.

Brickell CitiCentre is Swire Properties’ first mixed-use development in Miami and its largest single project in the city to date, although the company has 30 years of development history on the nearby island of Brickell Key.

The latest national retail report from Marcus & Millichap describes a brightening situation in downtown Miami. Space demand there has grown somewhat faster than in the rest of the county, and vacancy dropped about 100 basis points last year to 5 percent.

Citywide, the report anticipates 240,000 square feet of retail space coming online this year, versus 192,000 square feet delivered in 2011. Even so, net absorption of about 800,000 square feet is expected to reduce vacancy 70 basis points in 2012 to 6.2 percent, the lowest year-end level in four years.