At their June 28 meeting the City of Miami Beach’s Planning Board unanimously passed a favorable recommendation for an ordinance amendment allowing short term rentals for properties along Harding Avenue in North Beach’s historic Miami Modern (MiMo) district.
This ordinance is designed specifically to allow the historically significant older buildings in the area to have a viable, profitable usage that will encourage upkeep and discourage demolition. Michael W. Larkin, an attorney with the North Beach Property Owners Association, characterized busy, car traffic heavy Harding Ave. as an unattractive or “inhospitable” place for long term residence, and therefore property owners need new ways of using or renting their real estate. He noted that three lane Harding Avenue has tens of thousands of cars traveling on it every day.
“I think it (the ordinance) will do more than anything to reshape one of the gateway corridors leading into North Beach,” Larkin said.
Long term residential is what is to be found in much of North Beach and the City of Miami Beach usually does not allow short term – legally speaking, less than six months and one day- rental. But owners of MiMo buildings on Harding have complained for years that the rental income derived from their buildings under current rules will not allow them to cover the high costs of maintenance for the older structures, taxes and increasing insurance premiums likely related to sea-level rise. “Left to their own devices property owners are going to want to stem the losses; demolish and build new,” explained Larkin.
The minimum rental length under the new ordinance would be seven days. The city does currently allow hotels in the area.
“There’s a large demand for renting on a month to month basis,” said Daniel Veitia, President of Urban Resource Real Estate and Property Management Co., who sat on the Mayor’s Blue Ribbon Committee for North Beach and a later Steering Committee for this issue.
Thirty seven historic structures fronting Harding Avenue from the city line on the north to 73rd Street running south will be potentially affected by these new rules. Sitting in what is officially called the North Shore National Register District, these buildings have no protection from demolition.
’Remember, the owner has to improve the building,” said Veitia, who worked closely with community leaders for approximately two years to create this pro-preservation plan.
He noted that these MiMo building owners may be forced to spend 100,000’s of dollars on renovations to qualify for short term rental approval from the city.
Before qualifying, the MiMo, Art Deco or other historic structures must be fully renovated and restored in accordance with the Secretary of the Interior Guidelines and Standards amongst other strict regulations.Subscribe to Our Newsletter
Article Written by: Evan Berkowitz July 5th, 2016