Some deed restrictions at the site of a new downtown movie theatre have been lifted in order to help the Miami Tribe to satisfy requests of a lending institution.
According to Miami City Attorney Erik Johnson, when the city deeded property at the corner of Main and 3rd streets to the Miami Tribe, the three following restrictions were attached.
Construction must have been started prior to Nov. 1 of 2006 and completed before November of 2007.
The proposed theatre must operate as a theatre for at least five years, or ownership defaults back to the City of Miami.
The property must never be entered into Indian trust.
On Monday, Miami City Council officials relieved the tribe of the first two restrictions at the request of the tribe.
According to Johnson, the lending institution that is providing the funding for construction of the four-screen theatre has asked that the second restriction that holds the tribe to five years of operation be removed.
The request, according to Johnson, is valid.
In the event that the tribe does not meet its repayment responsibility, the lending institution wants to be able to claim the property and not be held to the restriction, according to city officials.
The first restriction is no longer necessary, according to Johnson.
“We asked them to start by November of 2006 and they have,” Johnson said. “And, we asked them to be done with construction by November of 2007, which they obviously will be.”
Johnson said the final restriction - a requirement that the property never be placed into Indian trust - remains in place. The restriction protects the theatre from ever being used as a gaming facility.
“I have no objections (to eliminating the two deed restrictions),” Johnson said.
The council unanimously approved the request to remove the restrictions.
The theatre is expected to be operational in 30 to 45 days.