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Downtown Miami is experiencing one of the most dynamic urban reinventions in the world. Less than 10 years ago, Downtown was a 9-to-5 business district, but today businesses are launching and thriving, city streets are populated around-the-clock, parks and cultural venues now occupy land that sat vacant for decades, and investments are pouring in. More than the gateway to Latin America, Miami today is fertile ground for technology firms and startups thanks to strategic efforts and investments by organizations like the Miami Downtown Development Authority, the Beacon Council, the Knight Foundation, Visa and others to lure them here. It hasn’t been a hard sell. With warm weather year-round, advantageous tax rates, favorable demographics, an improved transit system, cultural diversity, a wellness-centric lifestyle, the highest concentration of cultural institutions in the Southeast, a booming foodie scene with locally grown culinary talent, and nationally recognized yearly events, Miami’s urban core has seen an uptick in the number of technology businesses opening in the region.

For example, 500 Startups, a Silicon Valley-based venture capitalist firm with approximately half a billion dollars in investments globally, just celebrated its one-year anniversary in Miami. They came here to discover and back talented entrepreneurs in the region, connect them with resources and expertise and help build a diverse tech ecosystem.

As we continue fortifying our tech-centric strategy and diversifying business industries locally, there is still room to do more, and I believe transit-oriented development is the key to Miami’s continued path to success.

In a recent survey of tech talent, Miami ranked 48th out of the top 50 U.S. cities, but when combined with Fort Lauderdale’s pool of tech talent, South Florida ranks 15th nationally. And while Floridians have been raised as inherently car-dependent, South Florida’s companies and workers cross geographic boundaries all the time. With the opening of Virgin Trains (formerly Brightline), the region’s first higher-speed passenger rail service connecting the tri-county area, we’ve now exponentially expanded our workforce access while giving them more options of where they can live, work and play. MIAWorldcenter,miamiworldcenter ,

Adjacent to Virgin Trains’ terminal, Miami Worldcenter is the largest transit-oriented development in the Southeast U.S. When our 27-acre development is completed, it will not only serve as a ‘city within a city’ with multiple residential towers, retail, a signature office building, hotels and convention facilities, but will also function as Miami’s version of Grand Central station – Virgin Trains, Metrorail and Metro Mover all converging in one location. Virgin Trains’ terminal, Virgin Miami Central, will also bring TriRail to Downtown, which connects more than two dozen cities along the I-95 corridor. Underscoring the shift we are seeing from dependency on cars towards mass transit, three of the buildings planned for Miami Worldcenter – two residential towers and a hotel – will be built without any dedicated parking. Our team has created an urban plan that puts pedestrians first with promenades that will be destinations in their own right, connecting our residents and visitors to various transit options, retail, entertainment, arts and culture venues like Museum Park and even colleges. While we’ve allotted for parking throughout Miami Worldcenter, everything is integrated within our site with the goal of getting people out of their cars and on their feet.

Nitin Motwani has served as the Managing Partner of Miami Worldcenter Associates since 2006. In this role, he has already delivered on more than $ 1 billion of the $4 billion mixed-use real estate project, located in the heart of downtown Miami, Florida. Encompassing 27 acres of retail, residential, office and hotel uses, Miami Worldcenter is the largest urban development project underway in Florida. Mr. Motwani is responsible for every facet of the project, including land acquisition, zoning and entitlements, financing (public and private), joint ventures and development. An active member of the greater South Florida business community, Mr. Motwani is a member of the board of the Miami Downtown Development Authority where he serves as co-chair of the agency’s Enterprise committee; co-chair of The Miami-Dade Beacon Council’s One Community One Goal Initiative; serves as the advisory board chair of the Master of Real Estate Development + Urbanism program (MRED+U) at the University of Miami; and is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization.

“As we continue fortifying our tech-centric strategy and diversifying business industries locally, there is still room to do more, and I believe transit-oriented development is the key to Miami’s continued path to success.”– Nitin Motwani, Managing Partner of Miami Worldcenter Associates

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