The site was difficult, being somewhat hidden from Alton Road, one of Miami Beach’s main streets, so the building would need to be easily identifiable. Additionally, parking is at a premium in this historic Art Deco district and an innovative parking solution was called for.
In order for Publix to offer its shoppers easy access and maximum shopping space, the solution was to have the entire ground floor function as the store and place the parking in two levels above. We designed a system of exterior mechanical ramps where a shopper could bring their carts from the store and access the parking above. We also designed a system of cantilevered car ramps supported off of the exterior wall in order not to affect the clarity and workability of the supermarket interior. The pedestrian exterior cart and people-mover ramps are clad in a combination of glass and metal enclosures to provide protection from the sun, wind and rain, but also to allow the shoppers to enjoy a spectacular view of Miami Beach en route to their cars.
This glass and metal clad exterior ramp system is clearly visible from passing cars on Alton Road and is an immediate attention grabber. This building was named by Ocean Drive magazine as one of the 8 Wonders of Miami in their January 2001 issue and has been featured in commercials and in fashion shoots, something very few supermarkets can claim.