74 INTERIORS & SOURCES AUGUST 2015
By Robert Nieminen | Renderings ©SHoP Architects PC
Miami is known more for its beaches, culture, nightlife, and arts scene than for being a technology hub, but a newly proposed mixed-use
district is slated to help reposition the city as
“Florida’s Silicon Valley” in the near future.
On an approximately 10-acre, four-block area
in Miami’s Park West neighborhood, the team of
SHoP Architects and West 8, led by noted developer
Michael Simkins, have put forward a plan for an
urban campus that will provide the infrastructure
for the future growth of creative technology industries in the city. The Miami
Innovation District is conceived as an integrated complex of mutually
supportive programs including public amenities, targeted retail opportunities,
indoor and outdoor spaces for community and campus gathering, performance
and exhibition zones, office environments suited to the collaborative work
typical of high-performing tech companies, and a variety of housing designed
specifically for the generation that will be drawn to work for such companies.
In total, the project comprises 3,850,000 square feet of office programs,
2,400,000 square feet of residential and 250,000 square feet of retail with
2,500 spaces for parking integrated into the buildings.
The Miami Innovation Tower will be a new icon for the city and a major
public entry-point into the creative life of the district. With its fully integrated
active skin—a global first—the tower celebrates the unique flavor and vitality
of the city and announces its arrival as a world-class center for information
technologies. The architecture of the tower is inspired by a variety of forms
associated with the identity of the city, ranging from contemporary sculpture
and fashion to the taught, wing-like, graphics-covered sails of modern racing
sailboats—an homage to nearby Biscayne Bay.
At ground level, a public plaza and amphitheater will host cultural events,
as well as provide an inspiring setting for retail. As it rises, the Tower hosts
several observation decks, including a garden in the sky, that will also serve
as a demonstration site for the installation of environmental technologies.
The new Innovation District signals to the world that Miami is holding onto
its special flare even as it catches and rides the coming high-tech wave.
MIAMI INNOVATION DISTRICT
BY SHoP ARCHITECTS+WEST 8