October 24, 2020

Economic yearbook 2010

Miami-Dade / Monroe Yearbook 2010

Hard-hit Miami-Dade is getting a boost from tourism.

Met2 Financial Center
The nearly completed Met2 Financial Center (glass buildings, center) will add to the glut of office space Miami is already trying to fill. [Photo: Aerial Photography]

Miami-Dade County

Frank Nero
Beacon Council CEO Frank Nero says the area is getting interest from companies in Asia, Europe and Brazil and from a big financial services company that could create 500 jobs. [Photo: The Beacon Council]
Most economists think Miami has bottomed out and believe businesses will start to grow again this year. However, no one is predicting unemployment will improve much. “I think that the signs point to the fact that the unemployment rate is going to remain relatively high for 2010,” says Frank Nero, president and CEO of Miami-Dade’s economic development partnership, the Beacon Council. “A lot of that was in the construction side, and we don’t see that having any immediate uptick.”

To see real job growth, says Nero, “we would like to see, in the short term, construction back and financial services back, (and in the long term) more knowledge-based industries, more green industries and increased foreign direct investment.”

The area’s tourism industry held steady in 2009. Average occupancy rose 10.6% to 74.6% and revenue per available room was up 3.9%, but the increases came on the back of room rates, which were down 7%, to an average of $166.28.

There are also some indicators that the housing market has bottomed out, with sales of existing single-family homes hitting 6,685 in 2009, up from 4,379, and the median sales price falling to $195,300, down 29%, according to the Florida Association of Realtors.

Condominium sales seemed to be stabilizing as well, and by the end of the year, the number of new condo units for sale in greater downtown Miami had fallen to 7,265, from 9,631 at the end of 2008.

But a potential meltdown looms in the commercial real estate sector. Vacancies are continuing to increase, and 2.4 million square feet of office space is now under construction throughout the county. Filling those vacancies will require business expansion and new relocation into the area.

Nero says the Beacon Council is working on several projects, with a lot of interest from companies in Asia, Europe and Brazil and a financial services company he would not name that could create more than 500 jobs.

Port of Miami
The Port of Miami is undergoing $1 billion in improvements, including a dredging project.

People to Watch

» Port of Miami Director Bill Johnson is overseeing more than $1 billion in infrastructure improvements as the port prepares for the completion of the expansion of the Panama Canal in 2014.

Miami Shalala
Donna Shalala
» Miami Dade College President Eduardo Padrón will continue to spearhead growth and push to increase the skill level of students at the nation’s largest institution of higher education.

» University of Miami President Donna Shalala is the driving force behind UM’s Life Science Park, which could create as many as 4,500 jobs and have a $253-million economic impact. Many in the county believe in her vision that the park can be a catalyst for a major life science industry.

UM's Life Science Park
Rendering of UM’s Life Science Park. President Donna Shalala has been instrumental in moving the project along.

Tags: Miami-Dade

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