The public review process
Q: Was the Playhouse project publicly reviewed and what authority does the County have to develop this project?
A: The plan proposed by Miami-Dade County has been reviewed extensively and approved at public meetings of the Board of County Commissioners (BCC), the Florida Cabinet and Governor, and by the Board of Trustees of Florida International University (FIU). A list of reports and approval items reviewed and approved at public meetings of the BCC can be accessed by clicking here.
The terms of the lease with the State
Q: What are the terms of the lease from the State of Florida and what does it require from Miami-Dade County and Florida International University, as co-lessees?
A: The approved lease includes a Business Plan (or “land use” plan) that stipulates:
- An initial term of 50 years and two 25-year renewals;
- The use of the approved $20 million of County bond funds for the Playhouse;
- GableStage’s track-record as an outstanding artistic organization and its competency as the selected theater operator for the Playhouse;
- The ability to pursue additional compatible development on the property (e.g., a parking garage and the restored ground-level retail in the historic front building) with the objective of generating additional revenues principally dedicated to ensure the viability and success of GableStage’s and FIU’s cultural and educational programming at the Playhouse; and
- Miami-Dade County’s successful track record for working with non-profit cultural organizations to manage the County’s cultural facilities.
The State of Florida required this level of specificity in the approved lease to ensure that there was a detailed and doable plan to return great theater to the Playhouse.
The selection of the design team led by Arquitectonica
Q: How was Arquitectonica, a firm known for its modern designs, selected to work on a historic property?
A: Miami-Dade County conducted a competitive selection process for architectural, engineering, and specialty consultant services for the master planning, schematic design, design development, construction documents, and construction administration of the project. The team led by Arquitectonica, which includes historic preservation architect Jorge Hernandez among a stellar list of consultants, was the highest ranked team out of nine teams that submitted their credentials. Information about the selection process and the contract approved by the Board of County Commissioners on April 21, 2015 are available here: