May 19, 2011: Construction begins on 23 Biscayne Bay in Miami
Photograph by John Loomis
Large-scale construction in Miami simply stopped in 2008, mirroring the real estate bust nationwide. Not a single crane was erected over the city for nearly three years. On May 19, 2011, Argentine developer Grupo Melo celebrated the groundbreaking of 23 Biscayne Bay, a high-rise condo building marketed mainly to Latin American buyers. The party for Miami’s first major post-crash project was a decidedly ho-hum affair compared with over-the-top events back in the day, says real estate consultant Peter Zalewski: “There was no entertainment. There was finger food.” Now glass-and-steel towers are again rising above southern Florida, with 20 buildings under construction and 150 more planned. By the time it was completed in 2012, 23 Biscayne Bay had sold out.