Including new waterfront projects that embrace the view

These days, any discussion of South Florida’s changing coastline inevitably resorts to a debate on climate change and rising sea level, pumping stations, and adding ground height to new construction.

In Ft. Lauderdale, that conversation must also include the amount of new construction that will forever alter the city’s beachside appearance. While downtown is already in the midst of a makeover and luxury hotels are now a staple along the north end of Ft. Lauderdale Beach, these new projects – already approved by the city – provide a re-do of where Las Olas Boulevard meets the sea.

Ft. Lauderdale’s most controversial project

Perhaps the most controversial project is the current site of the Bahia Mar, a 38.6-acre peninsula-shaped property that sits on the Intracoastal. Because the city owns the land, there has been a years-long tug-of-war between investors, developers, residents, special interest groups, and commissioners.

City approval was finally given in December 2017 and has a 2028 completion date. The new Bahia Mar will include:

  • Seven high rises with 651 rental apartments and one high-rise hotel with 256 rooms. The towers will have an open-aperture design, so visitors will have a view of the water and of the yachts;
  • one five-story mixed-use building with a grocery store, office space, and parking;
  • one two-story restaurant;
  • a yachting amenities complex;
  • an above-ground parking garage;
  • a marina village that will feature kiosks, cafes, and a state-of-the-art 1,900-space, underground, two-level parking garage; and
  • a public promenade.

Las Olas Boulevard and A1A get a makeover

To help make the beach a more exciting place for tourists and investors seeking the beach life, Las Ola’s luxury is moving closer to the shore. At the intersection of Las Olas Boulevard and A1A, six projects are already underway:

  • The parking lot at A1A and Las Olas, across from the iconic Elbo Room, will be converted into Oceanside Park, with public restrooms, water-play features for children, and a beachgoer drop-off area.
  • To compensate for the loss of this parking lot, there will be a 670-space public parking garage to the north of the Las Olas Bridge and adjacent to the Intracoastal. During peak beach times, the city plans to provide free shuttle service so beachgoers do not have to make the two-block walk to the shore.
  • Just south of the Las Olas Bridge, a city parking lot will be converted into additional green space.
  • The Las Olas Marina, off of the Birch Road parking lot, will be rebuilt and expanded to include two restaurants.
  • The historic Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Center, home to the International Swimming Hall of Fame Museum, will be upgraded and modernized so pools there meet the latest standards for swimming competitions.
  • An additional parking project will be added near Sunrise Boulevard, just south of Bonnet House Museum and Gardens.

On the Ft. Lauderdale waterfront

Earlier this year, an additional 4.46 acres with 500’ of beachfront just north of the Elbo Room also came on the market – and developers have already started talking about luxury residential space and high-end commercial possibilities.

The professionals at Morris Southeast Group are excited to witness Ft. Lauderdale’s renaissance. Investors and developers are at last seeing this jewel as we’ve always seen it – a city that’s more than mobs of spring breakers. Ft. Lauderdale is simply stunning.

For a free consultation or to learn more about our property investment opportunities and/or other services, call Morris Southeast Group at 954.474.1776. You can also reach Ken Morris directly at 954.240.4400 or via email at


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