We miss eating at Sabores for a quiet Cuban meal.  But we all know that all the restaurants were forced to close with the sale of the Parkway Shops and old Theater Property.  We invite investing in Miami Springs and building something that would bring more retail and jobs to the area.  We always thought that might mean a mixed use office complex with retail storefronts.  Professionals working the offices during the weekday with enough spending cash to support the local restaurants and shops for breakfast, lunch, and take home dinners.

Sabores Restaurant

Alas, the City attorney made all the moves necessary to get the legal authorization from the City Council to approve a mixed use apartment complex to be built at the old theater complex.  Many residents were upset about adding more density to Miami Springs.  (Like we really needed more apartments?  Didn’t we need to add a greater commercial tax base?) 

New Theater Apartment Complex Rendering

Nevertheless, in a 4 to 1 vote (with future Mayor of Miami Springs, Maria Mitchell being the only one who dissented), the controversial apartment complex was approved.  At the close of 2019, the demolition of the old theater and the Parkway Shops began.

Fast forward to March of 2020 and the world comes to a halt with lockdowns due to COVID-19. However, we all know that business in Florida has returned with a vengeance.  Home improvement was all the rage in 2020 as people learned to work from home.  We went from quiet streets back to heavy traffic.  (And that’s with lots of remote work and remote learning still going on today.)

Hialeah Drive Construction Project
Hialeah Drive Construction Project (photo courtesy of Randy McGee via Miami Springs Community Facebook Page)

And of course, developers keep building in South Florida.  Look no further than the new apartment complex being built on Hialeah Drive. This project was approved at a similar time as the downtown development in Miami Springs.  Or drive by Palmetto Drive near 36th Street and see the new apartment complex taking shape there.  That project was approved AFTER the downtown development project was approved.

So what kind of progress has been made in the downtown development 15 months after demolition?  Well, as you can see below, not much.

Okay, that’s not entirely true.  Look closely and you can now see grass and weed growing over some of the dirt. God’s doing his part to make this lot look a little bit better.

Should we be upset that nothing is moving forward at this location?

Personally, I hate to see it look this bad as you enter “Beautiful” Miami Springs.  However, if this means these apartments won’t be built, that’s probably a good thing.  Could this be an opportunity to build something much better?  Possibly, but I wouldn’t bank on it.

All I know is that everything that has been shared with the community about this project has been nothing more than broken promises and bovine excrement.  And don’t get me started on all the rumors and fake news that have surrounded this project.

For example, earlier this year, the City of Miami Springs promised the construction would commence during the 1st quarter of the year.  Ahem, the 1st quarter comes to a close in under two weeks and there’s still no progress (other than the grass.)

Like I said when the City promised construction would begin soon, I’ll believe it when I see it.  In the meantime, we could use some more rain to help the grass cover the dirt piles.



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