ULI Global Awards for Excellence: Wynwood Walls–Miami
Developer: Goldman Properties
Designers/consultants: Tony Goldman and Jessica Goldman Srebnick in collaboration with DNB Design Group and Plusurbia, Janet Goldman, Joey Goldman, Marlo Courtney, Daniele Lomoriello, Victor Sanchez, Joseph Furst, Stacey Sequeira, and Jeffrey Deitch.
Site size: 1.7 acres (0.7 ha)
Standing out in the urban core of Miami, Wynwood Walls started as a collection of six privately owned warehouses whose exterior walls were transformed into an outdoor “museum of the streets” by visionary developer Tony Goldman. The Walls surround more than 1.5 acres (0.6 ha) of land—former parking lots and junkyards—that now provide multiple areas that the public can enjoy at no charge.
The Wynwood Walls development is credited with igniting a forgotten neighborhood, transforming it into a popular destination while stimulating creation of new businesses and jobs. The project includes 25,000 square feet (2,300 sq m) of retail and restaurant space, plus 40,000 square feet (3,700 sq m) of open and event space. The estimated total cost of the project is about $3.5 million.
Before inauguration of the Wynwood Walls in 2009, the neighborhood was much like any other industrial urban neighborhood that had fallen on hard times: failed manufacturing businesses, abandoned warehouses, and crime were more common than pedestrians. Looking beyond the decay and neglect, Goldman envisioned a town center and a home for street art as a catalyst for positive change in the Wynwood neighborhood.
Wynwood has become an icon in creative development for Miami, with startups, tech companies, coworking spaces, specialty real estate brokers, and national and international real estate investors vying for space near the Walls. The project attracts new murals and installations every year, in addition to new retail components and evolving programming that includes music, art, dance, and film. In just one year, more than 660,000 tourists visited Wynwood, with more than 450,000 entering the Wynwood Walls. The concept and execution of the Wynwood Walls space has elevated the genre of street art, provided free access to world-class artwork, and boosted international appreciation of the value of public art in neighborhood revitalization.