Developer plans $1B hotel where Miami Arena stood

Developer to build Miami World Convention Center Hotel; Slated to be Miami's biggest hotel

MIAMI - Developers announced plans to build Miami's biggest hotel where the Miami Arena once stood.

The original home of the Miami Heat and Florida Panthers was torn down in 2008. Skateboarders like Nayomi Orriols then began using it as a skate park.

"I remember coming here with family often to see the Disney on Ice shows," he said.

Developers want to build The Miami World Convention Center Hotel on the same spot.

"It's a great opportunity to see that area come alive," said John Nichols, the project architect.

The project will tie into the mixed-use Miami World Center on the east and the All Aboard Florida rail station on the west at W. 8th Street and Miami Avenue.

"We've developed an 1,800-room hotel," said Nichols. "There's about 500,000 square feet of convention and meeting space. There is a 1,500-seat theater and there are all types of other meeting rooms."

The complex will cost $1 billion, all coming from the private sector.

"In an 1,800-room hotel, normally you would have between 1 and 1-and-a-half employees per room, so you are talking about 2,000 employees, plus additional employees for all the convention components of this thing," said Nichols.

It's scheduled to take four years to build.

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