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Measuring Up Miami's Towers Vying for Super-Tall Status

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It's no secret that the real estate crash of the last decade hit Miami harder than Chinese algebra, the outlook was so bleak the optimistic predicted a recovery period of at least ten years and growth as seen during the best days of the boom was simply a phenomenon not to be witnessed ever again. Miami had other plans however, the eternal seductress for bad boys and dirty money, and the city simply turned its eyes south to the people that had plenty of capital but no safe place to put it. A culture that has been raised to save tenaciously and to invest only in Real property saw the desolate condos of this fine city as a sound investment with a side of beach and frozen cocktails… and at a discounted price. And so was Miami's rebirth, a premature one. Surpassing all expectations Miami's building appetite grew bigger than ever and with it the desire to reach new heights.

Miami's tallest building, the Four Seasons Tower, stands at 789 feet tall and has held the title since 2003 when it took it from the Wachovia Financial Center, which has stood at 764 feet since 1984. However, this town needed a building that was able to project the image of what it was, and is becoming. Miami needed to pierce the mythical "supertall" mark, which the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, the governing body of such things, defines as a building over 300 meters (984 feet) tall.

One could never forget the projects that wanted to but never could, Such was the case with the twin "Empire World Towers" which aspired to rise 1,022 feet into the sky right on Biscayne Boulevard, yet the plans never came to fruition. Then came other even more outlandish proposals such as the Kobi Karp-designed Miapolis, at 3,200 Feet (975 Meters). This behemoth proposed for Watson Island would've claimed the title of tallest building in the world, yet the building never really left the realm of fantasy.

In Miami building tall is not just a matter of having the financing in place. The Federal Aviation Administration has been shutting developments down like your prom date's father by imposing height caps for the area south of the Julia Tuttle Causeway, bordered by Miami Avenue, all the way down to the Four Seasons Tower in Brickell. This, the urban core, is the precise area where Miami is dreaming big! With a new tallest currently under construction, developer Tibor Hollo's 830 foot Panorama Tower, other proposals for a super-tall building have emerged, and leading the pack is Swire's One Brickell City Center at a yet to be approved 1,049 feet and Tibor Hollo's long planned One Bayfront Plaza approved by the FAA at 1,005, both of which surpass Jeff Berkowitz's SkyRise Miami proposal for an FAA approved 1,000 foot observation tower located at Bayside Marketplace.

In addition to these well known proposals, other yet-to-be-revealed projects also bear the potential of being officially "Super-tall". Such is the case of the Related Group's project called One Brickell, to be designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli and Arquitectonica. It will consist of three buildings, at 80 stories, 70 stories and 55 stories. Or another contender is the 70 Story "Ultra Luxury" Brickell tower right accross from Brickell City Center proposed by Ugo Colombo and Vladislav Doronin. Nothing says 'luxury' like extra tall ceilings, so give the people what they want, and, as a result, any 70+ story luxury tower could easily reach "Super-Tall" status.

Wonder how the new towers will stack up against the current skyline? How about other skylines around the world? Check out the world's largest database of skyscraper diagrams over at Skyscraperpage, with over 35,000 drawn structures which include drawings of current and proposed buildings for Miami. You can also utilize the search form to create your own diagram and compare buildings by country, city, or individually. This is yet another defining moment for Miami and size matters!—Andy Morales
· Miami Skyscraper Diagrams [Skyscraperpage]
· Four Seasons Tower [Curbed Miami]
· Empire World Towers [Kobi Karp]
· Miapolis [Kobi Karp]
· Panorama Tower [Curbed Miami]
· SkyRise Miami [Curbed Miami]
· One Brickell [Curbed Miami]
· One Brickell City Centre [Curbed Miami]
· Ugo Colombo's mystery tower [Curbed Miami]
· One Bayfront Plaza [Wikipedia]

Above: Panorama Tower

Four Seasons Tower

1435 Brickell Avenue, Miami, Florida

Panorama Tower

1101 Brickell Avenue, Miami, Florida

One Brickell City Centre

‎700 Brickell Avenue, Miami, FL 33131