Genting Cools Interest in Buying Miami-Dade School District Property

Marion Herbert's picture
Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The cash-strapped Miami-Dade School District has several options to consider from developers interested in buying its prime downtown real estate, but interest has cooled from its biggest suitor -- the Genting Group.

In December, the group of Malaysian investors told the School Board they were interested in buying the district's downtown property, which spans more than 10 acres of parking lots and office buildings on eight separate parcels.

But on Monday, the group said they are pursuing their scaled-back plans for a luxury development -- for now without a casino -- on The Miami Herald's bayfront property, which they purchased last year from the newspaper's parent company.

"Though we initially indicated interest in the School Board properties, we have since decided to move forward developing Resorts World Miami on the nearby Miami Herald site, independent of the School Board land," said Jessica Hoppe, vice president and general counsel for Resorts World Miami.

Starting with its purchase of The Miami Herald property, the Genting Group has invested about $500 million in real estate in the Omni area. The group is moving ahead with a scaled-back plan for a luxury complex on the bay after its bid to build the world's largest casino faded in February in the Florida Legislature.

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