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Miami-Dade Finally Close To Approving New Courthouse, Leaving Budget Problems Unsolved

A rendering of the proposed civil courthouse in downtown Miami. The Miami Dade County Commission is slated to vote on the proposal at a meeting on Dec. 3, 2019.

After years of arguing and false starts, Miami-Dade is a vote away from approving a new $267 million civil courthouse in downtown Miami with a project already linked to revenue shortfalls in county budget projections.

Approving the winning bid by developer Plenary Group would finally hand Miami-Dade a financial path to replacing a courthouse so old that it once housed a trial for Al Capone. Miami-Dade would get a larger replacement next door to the existing 1928 courthouse on Flagler Street, a historic building that continues to be burdened by maintenance issues, closed courtrooms and complaints of dated, cramped facilities.

A final vote scheduled for Tuesday will apparently have to wait until a future meeting before the County Commission. The latest agenda states the courthouse item was removed from the day’s proceedings. The courthouse plan requires approval from the Federal Transit Administration since part of the proposed site, a parking lot under a Metrorail track between Flagler and Northwest 1st Street is tied to federal transportation funds. The FTA has not yet granted approval, so the vote was moved to the Dec. 17 commission meeting, a Plenary spokeswoman said.

Read more at our news partner the Miami Herald.