Florida International University is building the first university hotel in South Florida
This week the Florida Board of Governors agreed on a partnership amongst Concord Benchmark LLC and FIU to build a $66 million 150-bed hotel and conference center at the 342-acre Modesto A. Maidique campus in West Miami-Dade.
The project will also feature a 32,000-square-foot conference center and a 13,700-square-foot Alumni Center, which can be used by FIU alumni for business gatherings, social and academic. The facility is planned to be completed by the fall of 2021.
“This project brings together our vision for an alumni center with a privately-funded hotel and conference center that will serve the university, the surrounding business community and will draw added visitors and job creation to our area,” said FIU Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and CFO Kenneth A. Jessell.
The hotel will be located on the northwest corner of campus near the Florida Turnpike and across the street from the University Bridge Residences, a mixed-use complex in construction at 740 SW 109th Avenue.
University hotels are common around the U.S., catering to parents, alumni, and special guests visiting campuses. The FIU hotel will be the first university hotel in South Florida.
The University of Miami plans learning dorms
The University of Miami decided it was time to replace its 50-year-old dorms with two sleek new clusters of mixed-use buildings. But the project will be more than just dorms. “This isn’t just housing; it’s an extension of the learning environment,” said Jim Smart, UM’s executive director of Housing and Residential Life. “You could make a loose analogy to a hotel, with the sleeping spaces on the higher floors and the more public spaces on the lower floors,” he completed.
Buildings in each cluster feature housing on the upper floors and classroom, recreational, office, study and meeting space on the lower floors. The first phase includes 12 acres with 25 intersected buildings and a multitude of outdoor spaces including study spots, grand courtyard, recreational spaces, and outdoor terraces.
Designed by Arquitectonica each of the seven-story main buildings will have five floors of student housing for 1,115 sophomores, juniors, and seniors, with the ground floor and mezzanine level of the main structure serving as event and university office spaces.
Unit sizes range from studio to four-bedroom. It’s expected to be completed in the summer of 2020 and will cost more than $150 million.
“We’ve learned a lot over 50 years,” Smart said. “We used to think of dorms as places just to sleep and study, but now we know a lot of learning, both formal and informal, goes on there. It’s really an extension of the classroom.”