Perfectly timed for full Art Basel attention, the New York Times' real estate section has revealed what Terra Group and Related plan to do with the 5.4 acre Coconut Grove Bank site, a condo project that has been shrouded in mystery and speculation since they bought it earlier this year. After a competition between four very bold named starchitecture firms (Diller Scifidio & Renfro, Christian de Portzamparc, and Atelier Jean Nouvel, and the Office for Metropolitan Architecture), all four of which will be presenting their designs in an exhibition at Design Miami this year curated by Terence Riley, OMA won. Not much of the design has been revealed so far, but the article does contain a few tantalizing details.
OMA's winning proposal was for six towers, with each building housing just one or two units per floor. "So each apartment has almost 360-degree views, which is representative of the Coconut Grove style, where the inside and outside is intimately interlocked," Mr. Shigematsu said. "The homes are like stacked villas, very different from an apartment where you are always sandwiched between two walls and have only one direction to look at." Under the proposal, added Jorge M. Pérez, the founder and chairman of the Related Group, "all of the units have private elevators, and they did a series of openings so that light comes in from everywhere — maximizing not just the view but also the light."
Typically, an architect's original proposal is not what gets built, and this development is no different. As it now stands, the working plan calls for only two to three residential towers, with units that range from 2,500 square feet to 3,500 square feet and are priced from $2 million to $4.5 million. Penthouse units will be larger and have higher prices.
· Miami Project Off To Arty Start [New York Times]