MIAMI - Construction has officially begun on the Paramount Miami Worldcenter, and while it's the second largest urban development in the U.S., there's been a lot of controversy behind it.
When finished, Paramount Miami Worldcenter will span half-a-dozen downtown Miami city blocks along Northeast Second Avenue and will be a shopping, eating and 500-unit high-rise residential destination.
"It's progress. We have to work harder to do something about housing and job opportunities for low income people and projects like this pronounce that even more so," Overtown resident Irby McKnight said.
Condos in the tower are slated to be priced starting at $700,000.
"My concern is always gentrification for my communities," Miami-Dade County Commissioner Audrey Edmonson said.
That's why Edmonson is pushing for more mixed-income developments in the Overtown area.
"It's a great location. It's in the heart of downtown," Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez said. "For 50 years, downtown basically died after 6 o'clock at night. Now you're starting to see a revival."
Gimenez also added that the development is a major job creator.
Officials said the developer has agreed to hire thousands from the neighboring communities for the construction phase, and then there are the positions created once everything's up and running.
"We have to ensure that staff is in place to monitor that, and if it's not happening, then we have to hold their feet to the ground," Edmonson said.
The project is slated to be completed in 2018.
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