As development in Miami’s core returns, many developers are concerned with what appears to be a review by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) height regulations, which could impose restrictions to the maximum allowable heights.   However, the FAA is not being clear on what exactly its intended revisions to the regulations may be, causing additional angst and uncertainty in the development community.  The FAA has merely indicated that they are reviewing the One Engine Inoperative (OEI) policy and that the public would be able to comment on any proposed changes.

One Engine Inoperative Policy

The Miami-Dade County Aviation Department (MDAD) contends that in 2010 the FAA reviewed certain local airports including Miami International Airport and found that the local zoning regulations already addressed the One Engine Inoperative policy.  In fact, MDAD indicates that the height restrictions were raised in 2006 from its prior approved heights.  In light of the increase to proposed development, this issue has been getting additional attention with the Miami Herald reporting among others.  This is also getting the attention of the Downtown Development Authority (DDA), which is clearly concerned about how any proposed height decreases can stunt development in the downtown core.

Impact of Height Limitations

According to some lobbyists who are studying the impact, the height limitations can be cut in half, leaving many buildings at a cap of 250 feet.  With several developments in the pipeline in downtown with heights well over 250 feet, this could cause severe implications towards the comeback of development in our community.