Reporting Ted Scouten
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami Preservation Board refused to grant the Miami Herald building its historic status on Monday in 5-3 vote.
With the Herald moving to a new building in Doral next April, the question of the building being an “historic landmark” was at stake.
Preservations argued that the building could be used for something else, while others felt like it was time for something new.
Preservationists highlighted the granite and teak inside, the mid century design of the large office on the third floor, the location on Biscayne Bay, the tile work outside and the design of the port cocherer in front.
“For more than a hundred years the Miami Herald and its direct descendants have been one of the most important institutions in Miami,” said Historian Ava Moore Parks.
Critics say the city has been too willing to allow demolition of historic buildings for promised new development that sometimes fails to materialize, especially in the Omni and Edgewater neighborhoods around the Herald building.
But its opponents, like the experts for the Genting group, said there is nothing historic about the building and think that it is time for a change.
Malaysian casino conglomerate Genting purchased the land and the building last year for $236 million. Genting intended to build a massive hotel-casino-residential complex on the property, featuring Vegas-style gambling. However, the company’s efforts to expand gambling in Florida have hit a wall.
Developers say they could make the building pedestrian friendly — allowing for great views and use of Biscayne Bay.