With the raising of the 42-story Icon Bay luxury condominium building, Plaza Construction—along with real estate developer the Related Group and design firm Arquitectonica—is bringing Miami’s Edgewater community up right along with it. The once-blighted 1.7-square-mile neighborhood has become a development hot spot, and Icon Bay is not only its most visible project but also one of its boldest, in terms of both design and location.
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“The site selection for Icon Bay is incredibly unique,” says Brad Meltzer, co-owner of Plaza Construction and president of its Southeast operations. “It has breathtaking 360-degree views, you see all around Miami: north up to Sunny Isles, over to Miami Beach, south to Key Biscayne, and right to downtown.” The tower rests on the edge of Biscayne Bay, with nothing abutting it on the east. “This project’s views are reminiscent of the 67-story Marquis building that we built in ’08—they’re that spectacular,” Meltzer says.
Icon Bay is the fourth project Plaza has done with the Related Group, one the most prolific developers in South Florida, and more are on the way. Construction of the building was scheduled to take place over a period of 24 months; it was topped off in just 15, with substantial completion due to occur in March 2015.
While working to translate the Related Group’s vision into a reality and maintain a brisk schedule, Meltzer and the rest of the Plaza team have been paying special attention to the individuals already living in Edgewater. “Being a good neighbor is something that is important because of our neighbor’s proximity,” Meltzer says, adding, “What’s really important about Plaza is the people and our sense of community.”
Plaza has done its utmost to ensure nearby residents are undisturbed by Icon Bay’s construction, and more broadly, it has made philanthropic contributions to organizations such as the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, the National Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, and the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center. Also, the Related Group, in collaboration with the National YoungArts Foundation, is partnering to strengthen the innovative arts infrastructure in Miami; more specifically, the Icon Bay’s sculpture garden will house original sculptures produced through YoungArts’ emerging artists program. Plaza, the Related Group, and Arquitectonica are hoping to create a symbol for the Edgewater area and its people—an icon, hence the name Icon Bay.
Plaza is now one of the nation’s foremost full-service construction-management and general-contracting firms. It was founded in 1986, and it has grown from a local organization into having a multifaceted national presence in the industry, ranked 23rd on ENR’s 2014 Top Contractors in General Building list. Recently, the majority stock of the company was purchased by China Construction America, whose parent company, China State Construction Engineering Corp., is ranked 20th on ENR’s 2014 Top 250 International Contractors list. The investment marks dynamic growth opportunities for Plaza—which continues to operate autonomously under its own name—but also provides financial strength and bonding capabilities.