Miami Beach Stops Construction at Rishi Kapoor’s Development
The developer is under investigation by FBI and SEC
The City of Miami Beach ordered unauthorized construction to cease at Urbin Miami Beach, a mixed-use development helmed by Location Ventures, whose founder and CEO Rishi Kapoor is reportedly under investigation by the FBI and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The stop-work order, issued June 27, alleges that the Coral Gables-based developer had not secured the necessary permits. Work on the project’s foundation and columns began a few weeks ago, according to the Miami Herald, which first reported about the stop-work notice. The penalty amounts to double the permit fees in addition to a $500 fine.
The proposed six-story development, located at 1234 and 1260 Washington Avenue, would feature 69 condos, 20,000 square feet of coworking space, and a market.
Location Ventures had secured permits to tear down the one-story building that stood on the half-acre site, and it applied for a building permit in 2021, which Miami Beach officials have yet to approve.
“Other than the demolition work associated with the demolition permit, they are not authorized to do any other work — until the building permit is issued,” Miami Beach spokeswoman Melissa Berthier told the Herald.
Location Ventures has denied the allegations. “This is old news, as there has been no construction activity at the URBIN Miami Beach site since March 2023 while we were finalizing a few minor comments regarding zoning and legislative updates with the City of Miami Beach,” Vivian Bonet, chief development officer of Location Ventures, said in a statement.
The order comes as Kapoor faces scrutiny for his ties with Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who announced a presidential run earlier this month.
Kapoor allegedly paid Suarez $170,000 over two years to help get a $70 million condo development in Coconut Grove approved. Both Kapoor and Suarez are said to not have declared the payments, which prompted the FBI to launch a corruption probe into Kapoor this month.
Suarez and Kapoor have previously denied wrongdoing.
The SEC is also looking into whether Kapoor sold investment contracts and did not register them as securities, misrepresenting potential profits to investors or misappropriating funds for personal expenses, the federal department confirmed to the Herald.
In December, three investors sued Kapoor, alleging he had changed the agreed financing plan and had secured at least $16 million in debt without authorization.
Julia Echikson can be reached at email@example.com.