Terra closer to building 387 apartments at City Center in Pembroke Pines

David Martin Pembroke Pines

Terra Group is one step closer to obtaining a building permit for City Center Residences, Phase II, a 387-unit market-rate apartment project in Pembroke Pines, after the city’s planning and zoning board approved a site plan amendment on Thursday.

The development will be part of City Center, a roughly 100-acre development, including lakes and retention ponds, located near the current city hall.

The Terra Group will be developing 47 acres of City Center. Phase I of the development will feature roughly 325,000 square feet of commercial space and 120,000 square feet of office. City Center is being touted as Pembroke Pines’ new “downtown.” The next step for Phase II of the project is a hearing for the site plan amendment before the city commission on Feb. 15th.  

Michael Stamm Jr., Pembroke Pines’ director of planning and economic development, told The Real Deal that the city is in the process of selling land to Terra Group to build the apartment component of the project. The developer already closed on the 17-acre parcel for Phase I of the project in September. The price was $925,000 per acre, or $15,937,000. Currently, The Terra Group is doing site work on the land.

Phase II of the City Center development, the residential portion, will be built on 14 acres. The developer will try to close on the land by the end of March, Stamm told TRD. The complex will be made up of 16 three-story walk-up buildings with varied designs.

“Essentially the Terra Group has a three-phase contract,” Stamm said. Phase I, which will be anchored by Publix, will be commercial, Phase II will be residential and Phase III will feature a 350-room hotel that will be built on the site of the current city hall, he told TRD. A new building that will house city hall, among other components, is under construction a couple of blocks away and is expected to be completed in March.

The new city hall will be a part of a four-story multi-purpose building housing a 3,000-seat to 3500-seat conference/performance center, a standalone commission chamber, and an 11,000-square-foot, two-story, contemporary arts center called the Frank C. Ortis Art Gallery and Exhibit Hall at City Center, named for Mayor Ortis in honor of his commitment to the arts.   

Also a part of City Center are two other apartment developments that have been built over the last several years: Modera, a 700-unit multifamily development built by Mill Creek Residential Trust, completed in 2013, and the Related group’s 365 units that are also completed.

There may be other residential components of City Center in the future, Joseph Yaciuk, planning administrator for the Pembroke Pines’ department of planning and economic development, said, but not right away.

Mill Creek Residential is interested in building more residential units, but we don’t know if it will,” Yaciuk told TRD. “The Terra Group could sell land to Mill Creek,” he said.

Yaciuk said that the city had wanted to deal with one developer for the City Center property, because coordination of design would be easier. “We were originally working with the Stiles [Corp.], but [that plan] didn’t work out. Then, we had an offer from Mill Creek for a portion of the available land,” he said.

City Center’s master plan has been around for a number of years, Yaciuk said.  Zyscovich Architects did the plan, after holding a charrette in 2008.  

What slowed down development at City Center was the recession, Yaciuk said. “Mill Creek started building on its 27-acre site at the time when we were coming out it,” he said.

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