$4 Billion Miami Mega-Mall Moves Ahead, Ignores "Collective Belief In Sea-Level Rise"

Plans for a $4 billion mega-mall to be built on the coast line city of Miami are pushing forward, despite the fact that the city is likely going to have to deal with rising sea levels and worsening weather as the years progress. Or, it simply could find itself underwater within years, if other projections are accurate.

But don't worry - academics at the University of Penn Wharton School of Business have a solution: just ignore the fact that Miami will soon be underwater, because otherwise you could create a panic that could, in turn, slow down tax revenue that the city is desperately going to need to - wait for it - adapt to being underwater.

So in the great spirit of Keynes himself, the project is pushing forward.

Government and developers are collectively moving forward on a project for a 6.2 million square foot mall that would house on its property a waterpark, ski slopes, and 2,000 hotel rooms. You may be asking yourself one, or both, of the following two questions.

1. Will Miami be underwater in several years?

2. Aren't most malls collapsing and simply going out of business?

But this mall is part of a new theory on building malls: one that focuses not only on customers buying things, but also buying experiences.

The Wall Street Journal reported on the project moving forward:

At a time when store closures are accelerating and struggling malls pockmark the country, county commissioners in Florida have approved a plan to build what would be the largest mall in the U.S.

American Dream Miami would also be the most expensive mall ever built, according to Canadian developer Triple Five Worldwide Group of Cos. The 6.2-million-square-foot retail and entertainment complex would cost an estimated $4 billion, Triple Five says.

The cost would include 2,000 hotel rooms, indoor ski slope, ice-climbing wall and waterpark with a “submarine lake,” where guests could enter a plexiglass submarine and descend underwater.

Edmonton, Alberta-based Triple Five secured zoning approval in May from the Miami-Dade County Commission in an 11-1 vote, and is now in the process to secure environmental and water permits for the 174-acre site.

The project provides a window into the thinking of North America’s largest mall developers as they confront the revolution in the shopping world sparked by e-commerce. They recognize it’s no longer enough to fill malls with stores selling clothing, food, electronics and other merchandise people can more easily buy online.

Rather developers are filling malls with restaurants, rides, trampoline parks, gyms, services and other types of entertainment. This strategy taps into the increasing preference of consumers to spend their money on experiences as opposed to goods.

And, of course, like any project developer that takes on massive, potentially risky projects, this one has a history of landing government subsidies, despite claiming that it doesn't want to.

A big part of the debate is over whether American Dream Miami should get any public subsidies. The South Florida Taxpayers Alliance, a group of mall owners including Simon Property Group , Taubman Centers Inc. and GGP Inc , have lobbied county officials to prevent Triple Five’s project from being funded or subsidized by taxpayer dollars.

The alliance said its aim was to have a level playing field, “where the new employment opportunities promised by the developers of this massive project do not come at the expense of current jobs,” according to its website.

Triple Five had a history of landing public subsidies for Mall of America and for American Dream Meadowlands.

But Triple Five says it isn’t planning on subsidies for the Miami project. “American Dream Miami will be built by private dollars,” Mr. Diaz de la Portilla said.

And so despite the fact that things look ominous for Miami's - well, existence - real estate development in the area continues to grow. Why is this?

Because along other "common sense" lines of thinking, there is actually a scholarly argument out there that makes the case that building more real estate in Miami could be a way to combat climate change. How? By ignoring the obvious.

Yes, according to a recent Bloomberg report, published in 2014, one way that Miami residents should be planning on dealing with rising sea levels is - wait for it – pretending it doesn't exist. The report, ironically prepared by a Professor of marketing and the co-director of the Wharton Risk Center at the University of Penn, makes the following insane conclusion:

That’s right, this study (surprisingly not funded by mall developers themselves), concluded that ignoring the problem could be the best way to create a false illusion of safety in the area and help generate the tax money needed to eventually deal with the coming change that will have to happen as a result of the sea levels rising.

Only in the world of Keynesian economics does this project - or anything related to it - makes sense.


Son of Captain Nemo Fri, 06/22/2018 - 17:29 Permalink

Because like Raytheon, General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin it's not about building it to work properly or have safety in mind?... It's about building it so that it will get destroyed and replaced with a "new one"!...

Tarzan cankles' server Fri, 06/22/2018 - 17:40 Permalink

the fact that Miami will soon be underwater

You lost me right there, It's a fact? 

One story, water is rare, and the aquifer is drying up,

then water is rising so fast cities along the coast will "soon" be under water,

Which is it? Because it can't be both.

Although, it could be neither.  There's a little thing called erosion, which has eaten up coastlines for eons.  The St Augustine Lighthouse was hundreds of yards east of it's current location, 200 years ago.  The old location has been under water since before most of us were born. 

Now think about it, what happens to a 3/4 cup of water, when you add a 1/4 cup of dirt?  The water rises. 

The ocean is rising roughly at the rate the inland is eroding, and there's nothing we can do to stop it except, go to your local canyon, and enjoy the results.

In reply to by cankles' server

Zero Point Leakanthrophy Fri, 06/22/2018 - 18:21 Permalink

The Australian government paid one of these climate "science" hacks a ton of money to scare people a while back. Professor Tim Flannery. He used the money to buy a beachfront mansion in one of the areas he'd claimed would soon be underwater.

In reply to by Leakanthrophy

stacking12321 Dickweed Wang Sat, 06/23/2018 - 02:20 Permalink


what does propaganda have to do with anything?

as far as i know, ocean levels rising is a well documented phenomenon, they are rising at the rate of 3-4mm per year, are they not?

people can debate whether "climate change" or "global warming" is the cause, but to the best of my knowledge, the oceans really are rising at this point in time, it's a measurable phenomenon.

In reply to by Dickweed Wang

Bladerunner44 ThinkerNotEmoter Fri, 06/22/2018 - 21:34 Permalink

This entire article is horse shit and an opinion piece. (not science) The location of the mall is 15 miles inland. No chance of non-sea level rise affecting it. Now wither it is a solid business decision is another story. With malls are failing all over the place I can't see this as a retail space play, it's more a destination site and that will fade quickly. The sea level rise issue is a joke. I live in the keys and the tides are the same as they ever were. No change. They point to Miami Beach flooding as proof.The beach has flooded forever, Ive been down here over 60 years and it happens twice a year when we have King tides, Fish in the streets and all that. It's the moon you morons not global warming.

In reply to by ThinkerNotEmoter

delmar Jackson Bladerunner44 Fri, 06/22/2018 - 21:54 Permalink

Miami Beach was built on a mangrove-covered sandbar almost singlehandedly by Carl Fisher. The city of Miami Beach may well sink over time. Miami is a little more geologically stable. My family has been in Miami since 1919. I have a photo of my 10-year-old dad standing on a drainage pipe jutting into the bay at the end of NE 61 st at low tide in 1929. It is not any lower in the water at low tide today than 100 years ago. As for the mall, they built a perfectly good mall downtown and built rapid transit to stop there. It is mostly empty once it became a hangout for the usual suspects. Also, I wish people would stop using the term king Tide. The correct term is Spring Tide for the very high tide and neap tide for the lowest.

In reply to by Bladerunner44

Bladerunner44 delmar Jackson Sat, 06/23/2018 - 05:57 Permalink

While "king tide" is not a scientific term, it is descriptive for unusually high tides which are in fact much higher than the average "spring tide" They occur usually once or twice per year vs normal spring tide which happen twice per month.

The king tide is the highest predicted high tide of the year at a coastal location. It is above the highest water level reached at high tide on an average day. King tides are also known as perigean spring tides.

So you see king tides are different from spring tides, and the term is useful to differentiate them from normal conditions. Back to school for you MR. Jackson

In reply to by delmar Jackson

Ghostmaker Tarzan Fri, 06/22/2018 - 18:03 Permalink

Despite the apocalyptic headline, ice loss has only been contributing about 0.3mm a year to sea level rise, about an inch per century. Given that sea levels have been rising at around 8 inches a century since the 19thC, there is no evidence that this is not a long-term phenomenon we are seeing...Indeed as Shephard himself is forced to admit, we did not start collecting data until 1992. This sort of melting could have been going on for centuries or longer. In fact, another paper published this month by Kingslake et al finds that there has been extensive retreat and re-advance of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during the Holocene...Then there is the question of the accuracy of measurements. A major study by NASA in 2015 discovered that Antarctic ice mass has actually been increasing since 1992, basically because of greater snowfall, and not decreasing as this new study claims. In reality, measurements of ice mass are not exact and are subject to huge margins of error.


I think they will be fine.

In reply to by Tarzan

Snaffew Tarzan Fri, 06/22/2018 - 18:37 Permalink

freshwater is disappearing...salt water is abundant.  There are very limited supplies of freshwater in Florida, Lake Okeechobee is drying up due to drought and aquifers are being overused by ignorant residents and farmers.  Salt water intrusion is becoming a big problem in Florida.  There is a 180 degree difference between freshwater drying up and sea levels rising---zero correlation.

In reply to by Tarzan

konputa Snaffew Fri, 06/22/2018 - 18:43 Permalink

Drought? Have you seen Paine's Prairie recently? It's still flooded from hurricane Irma 10 months ago.


"Abnormal dryness or drought are currently affecting approximately 1,000 people in Florida, which is about 0% of the state's population.

Population in drought numbers are as of 06-19-2018. These numbers update Thursdays at approximately 9am EDT."



In reply to by Snaffew

Tarzan konputa Fri, 06/22/2018 - 22:03 Permalink

That's the thing, I here all this and it doesn't register with my eyeballs, the lakes in NE Florida, mostly spring fed, are full.  The Spring that has flowed into a swimming pool in Green Cove Springs for a hundred years, literally, is still flowing at the same rate, and same temp, through the pool, and out into the St Johns river, like it always has.

Eight miles off Crescent Beach there's a fresh water spring that's been known by locals for centuries.  If you go there, on a calm day, you can still see the huge swell it creates on the ocean surface, flowing from 60 feet down.  The Lakes of Keystone, which have sat near empty for three decades, are near full again.  The bridge on HWY 21 in Keystone went over dry land for the last 30 years, it now has water under it again.

Last year, the flood on Black Creek in Middleburg broke all historic records, which go back over 100 years. 

We have been hammered with rain for days on in here, every afternoon in NE Florida,

because all the salt water comes back as fresh water, in the storms the author and "experts" keep telling us will be "more frequent".

If there is a fresh water shortage in Florida, it will be of nefarious origin.

In reply to by konputa

konputa Tarzan Fri, 06/22/2018 - 18:38 Permalink

I swear, the fucktards that write this shit seem to forget that some of us readers actually live in Florida. I've been here 3 decades and the water hasn't risen a damn quarter inch but erosion sure as shit has taken its toll on some areas. Some areas. It's like they expect the readership to forget that water is self leveling.

In reply to by Tarzan

Bladerunner44 dlweld Sat, 06/23/2018 - 06:10 Permalink

That is not correct. you can't have full aquifers and have salt water intrusion. think of the aquifer as a soda as you pull the water up through a straw it drops. Too many years of below average rainfall and the salt water seeps in to fill the void. That cycle has repeated for many years down here in south Florida. We actually have a number of salt water intrusion dams to try and protect the drinking water. Right now, we are in a wet cycle and the aquifers are nearly full, hence no salt water intrusion.

In reply to by dlweld

Endgame Napoleon Tarzan Sat, 06/23/2018 - 15:20 Permalink

Look, they are building a Venice Theme Park for the kiddos. 

It will soon be a Lost City of Atlantis Theme Park, with plenty of parking for the outlet shoppers. 

While it lasts, a few elites can make bank, and America’s working-in-name-only families can enjoy one more babyvacation while retaining their jobs. 

In reply to by Tarzan

afronaut cankles' server Fri, 06/22/2018 - 17:40 Permalink

Ocean currents control land based weather patterns. They shift through the decades. 2 super El ninos over the last 20 years have left alot of energy in the atmosphere. Currently escaping to space through the Arctic. Same thing happened from about 1880 to the 40s. Then it cooled into the 1980s. We are now in a warm period. It WILL cycle back to cold in the coming decades as it always has. It isn't CO2

In reply to by cankles' server

Dude-dude cankles' server Fri, 06/22/2018 - 17:49 Permalink

So either actuaries, insurance companies and banks are crazy to support this an[d] many many other projects along the coastlines across the globe, or [..] the conclusion is that these risk management professionals don't see much risk from 'rising' ocean-sea levels over the next 25 years.  It can't be both.  Either the banks and insurance companies are delusional in not recognizing the effects of global warming, or global warming is a ruse and they know it.


In reply to by cankles' server