Galvin Center Nears Full Payoff: Ahead of Schedule

Fantastic news!  Thanks to deft financial moves made by city administrators, the city is in position to pay off the purchase of the Galvin Community Center in April 2024.  That’s a full six months ahead of schedule and millions of dollars under budget.  Here’s the scoop.

When Johnson & Wales University closed in late 2021, the then-Wildcat Center became available.  I advocated strongly for the city to grab it.  I knew it would be a much-needed community asset.  But the asking price was $11 million and the city didn’t have that amount of money sitting around to use.  Luckily, a North Miami resident and developer, Jimmy Tate, stepped forward.  Tate bought the facility for $11 million and then leased it back to us.  The original term of the lease was 15 years at $1 million per year.  That means we would have paid $15 million for the site when the lease ends in 2036.

Instead, we’re taking advantage of a provision in the lease that lets us pay only the original purchase price of $11 million.  We sold the Margolis Center for $3 million in 2022.  That money was allocated toward the Center purchase.  In January 2024, we sold land at Sole Mia for another $3 million.  That has also been set aside for the Galvin Center.  And, finally, our CRA is taking out a loan for a variety of city-wide construction projects.  $5 million of that will round out the needed $11 million we need.  Our goal is to fully pay off the Galvin Center lease by April 2024.  Six months early and several million dollars less.

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