Downtown Coral Gables Overlay District


What is an Overlay?
Overlay districts allow geographically defined areas – usually core central business districts – to enact a layer of codes and ordinances unique to the district, thereby protecting existing codes for the rest of the City.

What is the Downtown Coral Gables Overlay Study?
The Business Improvement District of Coral Gables (“BID”) partnered with the University of Miami (“UM”) to set a definitive course to transform Downtown Coral Gables into a world-class destination by producing the Downtown Overlay Study. A blue-ribbon committee of professionals reviewed current conditions, regulatory issues and key trending topics and issued a final report that addresses specific elements that will magnify the benefits of the Downtown Coral Gables Streetscape project. Stakeholder forums were conducted and national experts both local and nations were brought in to review and provide feedback. The Streetscape project is the “hardware” that will dazzle our customer base, and the overlay study will identify the “software” that will make it most powerful and successful.

Overlay Overview
The Business Improvement District of Coral Gables (“BID”) set the original vision in place for the Downtown Coral Gables Streetscape project that will soon become a reality. The Downtown Coral Gables Overlay Study will in turn be the “software” that activates our Streetscape-which is the “hardware”– to make Downtown Coral Gables a truly world-class destination. While Streetscape address the physical improvements to the area, the Overlay addressed the zoning regulations to the area. It is the quality of the visitor experience that will keep people engaged in our downtown. The mix of shops, restaurants, businesses, arts, culture, activities and events are what convince people to live, work, patronize businesses, and return regularly to sustain the downtown. Just as the physical conditions of the buildings and streetscape change over time, so do the interests, tastes and consumer behavior of people. In fact, trends in retail, dining, arts and entertainment change much more rapidly than physical changes, and it is critical that the codes regulating both the physical environment and the uses are periodically updated to keep pace with a changing society and competing destinations. The challenge is to maintain regulations that nurture both a physical character and a mix of uses that reflect and define the community of Coral Gables.

Brief History 

Below find a brief history of the major highlights of the Downtown Overlay.  For more information, please call 305-569-0311.

• On October 2011 the BID Board approved the creation of an Overlay Steering Committee
• On February 2012 the BID issues press release announcing overlay study, purpose, etc.
• March 2012 the Steering committee composed of members and experts meets to for the first time to discuss what the overlay should consist of.
• October 2012 BID meets with city personnel in order to determine the next steps in the process.
• On November 2013 Annual meeting presentation – public meeting, Dr. Chuck Bohl from the University of Miami provided an overview.  Overlay Committee met with City of CG Planning & Zoning Dept.
• From 2014-2015  Several meetings were held between the BID and the City’s Planning & Zoning department
• Feb 1, 2016 Meeting with P&Z Department – The Overlay Committee met with Ramon Trias to discuss the Downtown Overlay updates based on recommendation from P&Z Board, this version reflects the redlined document with added illustrations and diagrams to make it easier to use and understand.
• Feb 10th, 2016 Planning and Zoning Board approves Overlay for Giralda.

Press Releases
Click here to view the press releases on the overlay project.

Click here to download the presentation of Downtown Overlay District (draft)

Presentation of Draft Downtown Overlay District – March 2016

Executive Summary
Draft Zoning Code Text Amendment
PowerPoint Presentation

Sidewalk Cafe / Outdoor Dining
Miracle Mile & Giralda Plaza Outdoor Dining Application


Business Improvement

District of Coral Gables

220 Miracle Mile, Ste 234

Coral Gables, Florida 33134

[email protected]


Tel. 305-569-0311

Fax. 305.569.0362


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