Miami New Times
Feb. 12, 2018
The craft beer industry is so popular in Miami that many of the surrounding cities want a slice of the action. Among them is North Miami Beach, which announced January 18 that it created the state’s “first” brewery district.
The city changed the zoning code for its redevelopment area by reducing the standard Florida law of a 500-foot separation between schools and breweries, distilleries, and wineries.
The district runs along NE 163rd Street from the west side of the plaza where Kmart used to be on NE Eighth Avenue and continues nearly two miles east toward Biscayne Boulevard, extending north and south along 163rd. The redevelopment area was established in 2005 as a partnership between the city and county.
North Miami Beach doesn’t have any breweries, but that’s why the district was created, according to Patrick Brett, the city’s Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) administrator.
After Brett was hired by the city in 2015, he met with leaders to brainstorm ideas that would help build the community, specifically concepts that would create jobs and increase property values. Breweries were the answer.
“They rejuvenate areas,” Brett says. “Just look at Wynwood.”
He conducted an informal market study and shared his findings with the CRA board. A firm was hired to conduct a formal study, which backed up Brett’s research, he says.
The study, by Redevelopment Management Associates, shows North Miami Beach is essentially located in what Brett calls a “craft beer desert.” The closest breweries are Bousa to the south and Hollywood Beer Company to the north.
A brewery in North Miami Beach would draw visitors from neighboring communities such as Aventura, Sunny Isles Beach, Golden Beach, Bal Harbour, Hallandale Beach, and Surfside, the study concludes.