Utility excavation work at Flagstone Island Gardens, the island Shangri-la promised 15 years ago on Watson Island and never delivered, was enough to keep the developer in its lease with the city. A photo taken on May 5, looking west toward downtown Miami, shows the property in its current state. (Photo: Emily Michot emichot@miamiherald.com)

Utility excavation work at Flagstone Island Gardens, the island Shangri-la promised 15 years ago on Watson Island and never delivered, was enough to keep the developer in its lease with the city. A photo taken on May 5, looking west toward downtown Miami, shows the property in its current state. (Photo: Emily Michot emichot@miamiherald.com)

It seems like it should have been big news.

In the waning days of April, an excavator rumbled over to the southwest corner of Watson Island and dug a hole. And just like that, Island Gardens, a planned $1 billion complex of hotels and waterfront shops promised Miami’s voters back in 2001 by Mehmet Bayraktar’s Flagstone Property Group, had finally broken ground.

At least on paper, anyway.

Read full story here.

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