Melo Group, one of South Florida’s most experienced residential development firms, has topped-off construction at Square Station, a new multifamily rental complex underway in Downtown Miami’s Arts & Entertainment District. The transit-oriented development will include twin 34-story towers with 710 market-rate rental apartments and 15,000 square feet of commercial space for ground floor retail and restaurant tenants. Located at 1424 NE Miami Place, abutting the Miami-Dade Metromover School Board Station, Square Station will cater to local middle-class urbanites and young professionals who work in and around Greater Downtown Miami.

Square Station marks the first phase of Melo Group’s larger three-phase multifamily development plan to boost transit-oriented residential options for locals in the Arts & Entertainment District area of Downtown Miami. Construction of the project is slated for completion in the first quarter of 2018, with apartments now open for preleasing.

“Square Station will continue our vision for the transformation of the Arts & Entertainment District – an area of Downtown Miami that has been residentially underserved for years – into a true live-work-play neighborhood,” said Martin Melo, principal of the Melo Group. “The project’s ground-floor retail will help to create walkable sense of community, while our transit-friendly location – with convenient access to the Metromover, Metrorail and Miami Trolley – will encourage the everyday use of public transportation and reduce traffic congestion during the workweek.”

Square Station’s Downtown Miami location will put future residents within blocks of some of South Florida’s top destinations for arts and culture, dining, shopping and entertainment, including the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, the Perez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) and the newly-opened Frost Museum of Science at Museum Park, Margaret Pace Park, and the AmericanAirlines Area.

For longer jaunts, residents will be able to connect to the Miami-Dade Metrorail system via Square Station’s adjacent Metromover station, providing stress-free transportation to and from Miami International Airport as well as the city’s top employment centers such as the Health District, Downtown Miami, and the Brickell Financial District. The Miami Trolley is also nearby, making neighborhoods like the Design District, Wynwood and Midtown accessible within minutes.

In addition to providing solutions to Miami-Dade’s traffic woes, Melo Group’s forward-looking luxury rental developments address the influx into Downtown Miami of people seeking greater flexibility and an urban lifestyle. As both millennials and their boomer parents re-evaluate the advantages of renting over home ownership, demand for rental inventory in the downtown core is skyrocketing. According to the advocacy groups National Multifamily Housing Council and the National Apartment Association, the total number of rental households across South Florida is projected to reach 700,000 by 2030. That would require an estimated 185,414 additional units just to keep up with demand – more than 2.5 times the supply new construction would generate at its current pace.

“The demand for high-quality rental units within walking distance of our city’s transit systems and prime entertainment venues is strong,” added Melo.

Melo Group recently received approval to move forward with the next two phases of the firm’s plan for the evolving Arts & Entertainment District neighborhood. Art Plaza, also known as phase two, will consist of a pair of 36-story towers located next door to Square Station at 58 NE 14th Street housing a total of 667 residential units and about 15,000 square feet of retail/commercial space. Miami Plaza, the third and final phase slated to rise at 1502 NE Miami Place, is designed as a 36-story tower with 437 apartments and about 7,000 square feet of retail/commercial space.

The developing neighborhood also includes Melo Group’s completed Melody Tower, a 36-story mixed-use residential building which opened in 2016 at 245 NE 14th Street, across the street from the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts. Along with providing 497 rental apartments, Melody has about 8,500 square feet of ground floor commercial space and a landscaped plaza with public art.

All told, Melo Group plans to deliver another 2,000 residential units to the Greater Downtown Miami area over the next few years in the form of high-quality, transit-oriented rental apartments.

Apartments at Square Station will feature granite countertops, Samsung® stainless steel appliances, laminated wood floors, porcelain tile, and full-size washers and dryers within each unit. Large balconies will showcase panoramic views of Biscayne Bay and the Miami skyline. Common-area amenities to include a resort-style swimming pool and pool deck, Jacuzzi, fully equipped fitness center, valet service, covered garage parking, security-controlled remote access and a social room.

Rental rates will start at approximately $1,650 for one-bedroom units; $1,950 for two-bedroom units; and $2,500 for three-bedroom units. Spacious floorplans will range from about 900 to 1,500 square feet in size.