By John Dorschner -
On the other side of the island, Island Gardens continues to make slow progress in creating a marina for megayachts -- the first step for a massive high rise development that was supposed to have been finished a decade ago.
Flagstone Property Group continues to looking for funding for its $700 million project. In September, Greenwich Group International, a major investment firm, said it expected to find investment partners for Flagstone "within two months." Greenwich did not respond to a recent query about the investors.
Flagstone spokeswoman Bettina Inclán Agen emailed: "Flagstone is in discussions with several prospective parties interested in investing in various components of this world-class development and North America's only super-yacht marina."
Inclán stated: "Island Gardens is on schedule and on pace. One of the first items set for completion at Island Gardens is North America’s only super-yacht marina. The first phase of the marina will be finished during the first quarter of 2015, with final completion of the marina being accomplished towards the end of the year."
Meanwhile, a judge has thrown out a lawsuit by some Miami residents who alleged that the Flagstone deal with the city violated the city's charter because it required only $2 million a year in rent when it should be paying $7 million, based on appraised property value.
A third amended complaint by seven residents, led by Stephen Herbits, was filed in late December. Among other charges, the lawsuit charges that the development would be a disaster for traffic moving along the causeways between Miami and Miami Beach. Their website is causewaychaos.org.
They're getting increased support. Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine posted on his Facebook page that the Flagstone project "will be detrimental to our already fragile and overburdened traffic infrastructure namely traffic on the MacArthur Causeway. I will continue to oppose this project and have instructed our City Attorney to explore all legal remedies available to the City."