Allapattah is one step closer to an important up-zoning along its major commercial corridor, that will restore much of the density that was stripped of it with the adoption of Miami 21.

A measure passed the first reading before the commissioners, that would up-zone a large strip of the area that runs along NW 20 st, roughly from 13 ave to 27 ave, to T-6-8-O. T-6-8-O zoning permits for up to 8 stories of height, a combination of uses such as retail, residential, hotel or office, and permits a unit density of 150 residential units per acre. It should be noted that the street carries much strategic importance. It anchors this working-class centrally-located neighborhood, but also of note is that NW 27 ave is a major north-south corridor that connects disparate neighborhoods from north Miami all the way to coconut grove, and 20th street runs from the industrial ports of the river to Wynwood and Biscayne.

Allapattah’s history provides for an interesting narrative, having been an entry point and settling ground for many migrant waves. Post 1959 saw the influx of Cubans, while the 1980s saw them displaced by Dominicans, Nicaraguans, and Hondurans in the aftermath of various refugee crises in those nations. The area is now a melting pot of Caribbeans, Central Americans, and South Americans. The 20th street corridor in particular has seen itself evolve through many itinerations. Its retail shops boomed as it serviced local populations and became a mecca for wholesale to the Caribbean, Central and South America. The recent great recession was fiercely damaging to this area, but this up-zoning promises to open the door to a period of rejuvenation.

It is expected that the next and final review of the measure will be on February 26, 2015.

-Carlos Fausto Miranda