I come from New York City,  and there garages are stuffed inside buildings and hidden below ground. Add to this they are generally smelly and dirty and not some place I would chose to hang out. Lo and behold, in the beautiful city of sunshine and citrus fruit known as Miami, there  has been a a trend for

world-renown starchitects to design and build parking garages that come from another world.


Ballet Valet by TEN Arquitectos, Miami

Ballet Valet by Arquitectonica


These public spaces are a far cry from those depressing edifices in New York City and way beyond those circular puzzles popular at airports and in other urban areas. Bring on the  starchitects such as Frank Gehry, Herzog & de Meuron, Arquitectonica and Zaha Hadid  and glamorous parking structure are the new operative words for garage in Miami. All of this was an outgrowth of a change in the demographics of the population, when the multitude of retirees was replaced with the rich and famous as a result of the re-gentrification of Miami Beach and it’s surrounding areas.  This led to the growth of tourism and a need for new facilities to match the sophisticated new hotels, residences and stores that were being designed and constructed.


New $13,000,000 garage to be built in Miami by Zada Hadid Architects

Collins Park Garage by Zada Hadid Architects


The whole thing has turned the plebeian garage space into an architectural structure that not only may provide additional services…think: be rented out for a wedding!…but has also added to the architectural tourism of the city. Ta-Ta to those depressing second sisters of architecture in the United States and hello to astonishing and awesome.


Pennsylvania Avenue Garage by Gehry Partners

Pennsylvania Avenue Garage by Gehry Partners


The reinvention of the garage concept began in 1995 when the Miami firm, Arquitectonica, designed the Ballet Vallet in the South Beach area, which was a combination of retail shops at street level and a garage above.  This established a new bench mark for  parking facilities, the goal being to put an end to the construction of ugly, ordinary structures that proliferated in the city. Soon followed a slew of outstanding parking garages around Miami: Perkins + Will’s City Hall Annex, Frank Gehry’s garage at the New World Center,  Enrique Norten’s TEN Arquitectos’ Park@420 and the fabulous 1111 Lincoln Road by Herzog & de Meuron.


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Purdy Avenue Garage in Sunset Harbor by Arquitectonica


This carchitecture,…don’t you just love that word… marrying high end architecture and car storage, has attracted not only those people with Ferraris and Rolls Royces but those eager to attend wine tastings, yoga classes and extravagant dinner parties at these facilities. The buildings, with their extreme high ceilings and 360 degree views are showcases for events and attract people from all over for guided tours and to take photographs, with no intention of even parking their cars!


420 Lincold Road Garage by Enrique Norten

Park @ 420 Garage by Enrique Norten


 Zaha Hadid”s new $13,000,000 parking structure in Miami called Collins Park really looks amazing. As Hadid said in one article I read, “We hope that it provokes a different way of looking at something ordinary.” By turning eyesores into icons, Miami has succeeded in raising the bar for the quality of living in the city  and taught many how easy the ordinary  can become the extraordinary.


City Hall Annex by Will + Perkins

City Hall Annex by Will + Perkins


One last thing I need to show you which really blows my mind away.  They now have Robotic Garages in Miami!  Enrique Norton of TEN Arquitectos put it in his garage design and it is also happening in new apartment developments being built down there.  You MUST check out this video!



I think I’ve said it all…


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Ciao, ciao ’til next time!