The In’s and Out’s of the Wynwood Norte NRD-2 Public Benefits Program

Bilzin Sumberg
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Bilzin Sumberg

Last year, the Miami City Commission approved a major zoning overhaul for the portion of Wynwood lying north of NW 29th Street — dubbed Wynwood Norte. We previously published an article highlighting some of the new development opportunities created by the Wynwood Norte Neighborhood Redevelopment District (the “NRD-2”). The Wynwood Norte NRD-2 regulations, found in Appendix P to the City of Miami’s Zoning Code (“Miami 21”), include, among others, a robust Public Benefits Program.

The intent of the Wynwood Norte NRD-2 Public Benefits Program permits bonus Building Height in exchange for contributions to specific programs that provide benefits to the public within the NRD-2 boundaries. These public benefits include: Affordable/Workforce Housing, Public Parks and Open Space, Civic or Civil Support Uses, Micro-Retail/Startup Space, and monetary contributions to the Wynwood Public Benefits Trust Fund. The Wynwood Norte Public Benefits Program supersedes the Public Benefits Program generally applicable under Miami 21. Additionally, Miami 21’s Affordable and Attainable Mixed Income Housing Special Benefit Program is still applicable within the NRD-2.

Some of the main principles of the Wynwood Norte Public Benefit Program are delineated below:

  • For each square foot of Affordable/Workforce housing priced at or below eighty percent (80%) of the area median income, the development shall be allowed three (3) square feet of additional area up to the bonus Height and FLR and for each square foot of Affordable/Workforce housing priced above eighty percent (80%) area median income, the development shall be allowed an equivalent amount of development Floor Area up to the bonus Height and FLR
  • For each square foot of dedicated Public Park or Open Space provided above that required in NRD-2, the Development shall be allowed an equivalent amount of Development Floor Area up to the bonus Height.
  • For each square foot of Micro-retail/Startup Space, the Development shall be allowed three (3) times the Development Floor Area up to the bonus Height. - For a cash contribution to the Wynwood Norte Public Benefits Trust Fund, the Development project shall be allowed additional Floor Area up to the bonus Height. The cash contribution shall be determined based on a percentage of the market value of the per square foot price being charged for units at projects within the market area. The cash contribution is adjusted on an annual basis to reflect market conditions.

As noted above, the benefits permit additional Floor Area up to the designated bonus Height, which is in turn predicated upon the underlying zoning transect. Two of the principal zoning transects of Wynwood Norte are T5-O and T6-8. More particularly, the bonus Height designations are as follows:

  • T5-O properties have a five (5) Story maximum, but are eligible for a bonus to a total of eight (8) Stories. The first additional floor of Development Height is permitted only through the Public Benefits Program. Additional bonus Height may be achieved through the Public Benefits or through the Wynwood Norte TDR Program. We shall detail the Wynwood Norte TDR Program in a subsequent publication.
  • T6-8 properties have an eight (8) Story maximum, but are eligible for a bonus up to a total of twelve (12) Stories. The first half of Bonus Development FLR is only permitted through the Wynwood Norte Public Benefits Program. Additional bonus Height may be achieved through the Wynwood Norte Public Benefits Program, or through the Wynwood Norte TDR Program. We shall detail the Wynwood Norte TDR Program in a subsequent publication.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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