Miami Entertainment Complex Prepares for Key Scene
By Balazs Szekely, Associate Editor
Miami Entertainment Complex will be developed and operated by EUE/Screen Gems as of Nov. 20, as the Miami Omni Community Redevelopment Agency’s board of directors voted unanimously to begin negotiations with the proposer.
The Miami Omni CRA has been seeking proposals from qualified bidders to design, build, operate and manage a major film and television studio in Miami’s Media and Entertainment District since September.
The mixed-use studio will be located at 50 NW 14th St., just a few blocks from Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County.
According to Miami Omni CRA Chairman Marc D. Sarnoff the project will soon bring hundreds of construction jobs as well as permanent ones to the area and of course contribute significantly to the local economy and to the long-awaited revitalization of the Omni District.
“Through this partnership, we will create the infrastructure needed to reignite the film industry in South Florida,” Sarnoff says.
The overall redevelopment is already underway with a $6 million reconstruction of NE 14th Street between the Arsht Center and MEC nearly completed, which provides streetscape enhancements including, among others, new, wider sidewalks and decorative pavement.
Pieter A. Bockweg, executive director of the Miami Omni CRA is also confident in the collaboration with EUE/Screen Gems, saying that the board chose the candidate with the most experience in the domain. The company takes pride in owning and operating the largest studio in the U.S. outside of California, which is located in Wilmington, N.C. The more than 150,000 square-foot complex gives home to the very stage that served as location for the filming of scenes from “Iron Man 3” and “The Conjuring,” to mention only the latest ones. The firm also holds film and television production facilities in New York City and Atlanta.
The design and construction contractors are all South Florida based companies. The crew includes the architectural team from AECOM’s Coral Gables office, along with the surveying team of J. Bonfill & Associates, the Miami engineering firm of Kaderabek Company and Fort Lauderdale based Facchina Construction of Florida.
MEC will encompass around 70,000 square feet of studio space with two film sound stages of 10,000 to 12,000 square feet. Aside from the spaciousness of the studios, the 50-foot ceiling heights provide plenty of vertical space too for a wide variety of productions to be carried out. A motion capture studio designed for digital imaging, 3D animation and gaming will also be included, as well as several editing suites, screening rooms and 12,000 SF of office and accessory rooms.
The CRA will reimburse EUE/Screen Gems up to $10.5 million in development costs once negotiations are complete and the final contract award is made.
Photo credits: EUE/Screen Gems