CLIENT NEWS: Brightline effect: Karsenti plans rentals next to Aventura stop

December 2, 2022

Arnaud Karsenti’s 13th Floor Investments wants a piece of the booming real estate market around the Brightline Aventura Station.

The Coconut Grove-based firm is the prospective buyer of 2.4 acres of land just south of the soon-to-open train stop where the firm envisions a 350-unit apartment building, according to an application filed to Miami-Dade County late last month. The site at 19680-19770 West Dixie Highway is separated by the Forum Aventura office condominium from the Brightline station.

The Corwil Architects-designed project would rise 17 stories along West Dixie Highway, tapering down to seven floors in the center of the building and to four stories along Northeast 26th Avenue, which borders the west side of the development site. Plans call for 5,300 square feet of ground-floor retail and a seventh-floor amenity deck.

The total number of proposed units includes a density bonus that 13th Floor can obtain if it designates 10 percent, or 35, of the apartments as workforce housing.

13th Floor’s submittal is for a pre-application meeting, which is generally done so developers get county employees’ feedback before they file an official application. The project would also require county commissioners’ consideration.

This isn’t the firm’s first bet on transit-oriented development. Near Miami’s Douglas Road Metrorail station, 13th Floor and Adler Group are developing Link at Douglas where a second apartment tower is to open by year’s end.

Karsenti’s firm is the latest in a long line of developers submitting proposals in the area around Brightline Aventura Station, although his site of choice is much closer to the stop than the properties other builders have picked.

The stop, which is expected to open by year’s end at 19796 West Dixie Highway, is in the Ojus neighborhood that’s just outside Aventura.

His filing comes on the heels of Yakov Cohen and Shimon Bouskila’s request to build a 15-story, 261-unit apartment project on a site they scooped up three months ago south of the stop.

Others betting on the station firing up the area’s real estate market are Ram Realty Advisors and Pinnacle. They plan an apartment building at 19640 West Dixie Highway, a site they bought for $15.4 million in January.

The Brightline train already connects the downtowns of Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, where the stations jump-started a flurry of development and investment sales of buildable sites in recent years.

Most recently, the Damaghi family paid $50.8 million for the developable lots immediately south of MiamiCentral that have “special exception approval” for 2,007 residential units and almost 50,000 square feet of retail. The Damaghis are better known for their ties to the household goods manufacturing firm, First Quality Enterprises, which is based in Great Neck, New York.

Published December 1, 2022 on

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