The photo on the left is what Brickell Key looked like in 1985 and on the far right you can see the Miami Tower under construction. In 1975 the island was completely empty and barren after developing from dredging of the Miami River. By 1985 one condo had been built on Brickell Key and the Brickell skyline was becoming lined with condos. By 1999, the island had grown even more with more condos, but the Mandarin Oriental was not built yet. The photo on the top right is what Brickell Key and Downtown Miami look like today. Brickell Key is almost fully developed and the Brickell skyline is no longer visible except for the Four Seasons and Icon Brickell.
The 85 story Panorama Tower has reached the 57th floor of construction. The tower will surpass the Four Seasons Miami as the tallest building in Miami at 830 feet. Expected to top out early 2017, the views from the 57th floor are already spectacular, where you can see all of Brickell, Downtown Miami, Key Biscayne, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Miami Beach and on a clear day, Bimini.Read More
The top left photo is what Brickell, Brickell Key and Downtown Miami looked like in 1999. Development has increased during those 17 years and the density is very apparent. The South tip of Brickell Key was covered in trees before the Mandarin Oriental was built in 2000. The Miami Tower was one of the tallest buildings and could be seen for miles away, but is now hidden by surrounding towers.
Brickell has changed drastically since the top left photo in 1982. A new Holiday Inn opened on the Southern edge of Brickell next to the Miami River and eventually became the Sheraton Biscayne Bay Hotel. The Sheraton Biscayne Bay Hotel was demolished in 2005, along with the low rise apartments on the land that became the Miami Circle. The Dupont Plaza Hotel can be seen in the foreground was eventually demolished in the early 2000's to make way for the Epic Hotel. In the distance, condos such as The Palace and Villa Regina were staring to get built during the peak of the Cocaine Cowboys era in Miami during the 80's.