Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava vetoed a 379-acre expansion of the Urban Development Boundary near Homestead for a major industrial development.
The move could put the brakes on a 5.9 million-square-foot industrial project, one of the largest in the region.
“Moving the Urban Development Boundary will have a detrimental impact on residents countywide for generations to come,” Levine Cava stated. ““This decision threatens our efforts to build a world-class, better connected, and more resilient community – undermining investments we are already making to expand transit and fortify neighborhoods against flooding and sea level rise.”
The County Commission approved the UDB expansion for the South Dade Logistics & Technology District by an 8-4 vote on Nov. 1. Normally, expanding the UDB requires nine votes, but one seat is empty following the suspension of Commissioner Joe Martinez.
However, the County Commission could decide to override the mayor’s veto on Nov. 15. It would take eight votes to do so. Two new commissioners were elected last Tuesday, but they won’t take their seats by the next meeting.
The development was proposed by Aligned Real Estate Holdings LLC, owned by Jose Hevia, and South Dade Industrial Partners LLC, an affiliate of Coral Rock Development Group. They have the farmland under contract from multiple parties. It’s located on the south side of Florida’s Turnpike and north of Southwest 268th Street, between Southwest 122nd Avenue and Southwest 107th Avenue. It would be just north of Homestead Air Reserve Base.
The site is just west of Biscayne Bay, which is why Mayor Levine Cava said the project would jeopardize efforts to restorethe bay and the Everglades. She also noted it’s in an area that is at risk of storm surge.
“This application prioritizes short-term financial gain – with no guarantee of job creation – at the expense of our shared economic prosperity and our precious natural environment,” Levine-Cava stated.
The developers of the South Dade Logistics & Technology District said the project would be better for Biscayne Bay than the agricultural uses currently on the site. They also pledged to purchase and maintain another 622 acres of environmentally endangered lands so the county can preserve them. Of the 379 acres that would be expanded into the UDB, 311 acres would be developable.
““It is very unfortunate that the mayor chose to veto thousands of good-paying jobs, environmental remediation that will help clean up Biscayne Bay and the guaranteed preservation of 622 acres of environmentally sensitive lands by way of a donation to Miami Dade County by the South Dade Logistics and Technology District,” Aligned Real Estate Holdings stated. “We look forward to the veto override vote and are respectfully confident our application continues to have the necessary support from the County Commission.”
Industrial rents have reached an all-time high in Miami-Dade but the county is running out of large parcels for industrial development within the UDB.