NoBe Nexo

2017 Plimpton-Poorvu Design Prize, First Place Winner

Patricia Alvarez, MDes Real Estate and the Built Environment ’18
Lisa Hollywood, MAUD ’17
Chris Merritt, MLA II ‘ 17
Lindsay Woodson, MDes & MUP ’17

View of NoBe Nexo towards Biscayne Bay
Nexo Paseo, the main artery of the development, is an open space promenade connecting the bay and the ocean, and the focal point of food-related programming and community vitality. It performs as the food hub, job center, economic driver, and stormwater management stystem that functions as the foundation of the development.

NoBe Nexo is a redevelopment project in North Miami Beach, Florida, integrating a mix of uses into a cultural and culinary hub that through a performative density strategy provides a model of resilience to climate change and gentrification. The project implements immediate mitigation and prevention measures for pressing environmental risks as well as delivering assets relevant to the current residents and local character of the neighborhood.

Located at the boundary between the affordable neighborhood of North Beach and the upscale neighborhood of Surfside to the north, development pressure is acute at this location. Nobe Nexo creates a nexus between the disparate neighborhoods and protects the residents of North Beach from wholesale displacement.

The current North Beach community is economically disadvantaged compared to its neighbors, and the population is largely Hispanic. This project also aims to ameliorate the food insecurity of the neighborhood and frames the development as a culinary destination for all income levels.

Land use diagram (left) and phasing details (right). Click to enlarge.

The 18-acre site includes 1.5 million square feet of retail, hospitality, institutional and residential uses, offering an array of products and units to balance the requirements for affordability and luxury within 3 phases over a 15-year investment horizon. The land assembly is facilitated by a clustering of publicly-owned land at the site, with 58% of the parcels owned by either of the city (West Lots) or institutions (elementary school, senior housing, and church).

In order to afford the resiliency measures required for the area, on top of the subsidies applicable to the development, the Adaptation Action Area seeks to involve third party capital through innovative financing alternatives.

The level of investment calls for an enhanced density or “Performative Density” within a private-public partnership structure to ensure the feasibility of public benefits. The massing responds to the existing context with height along the bay and Collins Avenue, and steps down toward single-family housing to the south. Neighborhood features are preserved within the redevelopment, with the preservation of specific historic buildings and the continuation of existing institutional uses.

The main artery of the development, Nexo Paseo, is an open space promenade connecting the bay and the ocean, and is the focal point of food-related programming and community vitality. It performs as the food hub, job center, economic driver, and storm water management system that functions as the foundation of the development.

The Hub: As the groundbreaking component, The Hub includes a culinary institute and school as an institutional anchor seeking to reinforce employment and local opportunity. Major festivals will be cultivated through a partnership between the local elementary school and Miami Culinary Institute to offer events such as cooking demonstrations, after-school classes for kids, and community workshops.

Plimpton-Poorvu Design Prize

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Established with a gift by long-term friends, business partners, and GSD advocates Samuel Plimpton (MBA ‘ 77 & MArch ’80) and William J. Poorvu (MBA ’58), the Plimpton-Poorvu Design Prize recognizes the two top teams or individuals for a viable real estate project completed as part of the GSD curriculum. Both teams’ projects demonstrate a successful integration of design, feasibility, and implementation strategy.
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