Miami Condo Approved for Construction if Height is Reduced

By Erika Schnitzer, Associate EditorMiami–LAB Developers has received approval from the City Commission for their two-tower condominium complex, Kubik (pictured), as long as the firm reduces the project’s height. For over four years, the firm has been involved in a lawsuit against some neighbors who have taken issue with the height of the tower.On June 26, LAB Developers went before the Miami City Commission for the third time to get the project approved. No additional testimony was heard at the meeting. Of the five neighbors who have filed the suit against LAB Developers, only one of them lives across the street from the land slated for development.“They have won two appeals in two years,” says Paul Murphy, a partner on the project. “We had to go back to the Commission for a third time to get the project approved. It was approved on a 3-2 vote,” he says, adding that with the first appeal, the vote was unanimously in favor of Kubik.Originally approved in 2003 at 151 ft., well under the maximum height of 240 ft. according to the city’s zoning code, the 303-unit Kubik will now be reduced to 120 ft. The neighbors have been fighting for the development to be reduced to no higher than 35 ft.The neighbors have 30 days from the date of the latest ruling to file an appeal, which Murphy and LAB Developers expect they will. If they don’t, LAB will redo the plans to include the same number of units, square footage and amenities—including a pool, spa and fitness center—as the original plans.Though the project was initially planned as a condominium, Murphy says he and the firm are contemplating changing it to a luxury rental property. “We’ll have the same footprint but smaller units,” he says.