Press Release

K. Michael Chen

Thursday, December 10, 2020 - 4:06pm

The Dania Beach Community Redevelopment Agency welcomes the new leadership of K. Michael Chen as its Executive Director. Mr. Chen has extensive experience in Economic Development and Public Administration management. He has served the cities of Fort Lauderdale, Fl. Tampa, FL, and the Village of Oak Park, in Illinois leading economic development initiatives, creating economic development strategies/tools, and managing business attraction/retention initiatives. He also directed the Community Redevelopment Areas in Tampa and Oak Park. In Fort Lauderdale, he created the award-winning BEAMs Business Academy. Mr. Chen has been personally responsible for the development of over $5 billion of city-sponsored projects.

Mr. Chen has a long history working with global markets. His family’s business was among the first to import Japanese steel to the United States and supplied industrial hardware to mining operations, steel mills, and petrochemical plants throughout the Western Hemisphere. His family company structured project teams with large Japanese trading companies and major US engineering companies to provide turnkey project proposals (engineering, construction, and financing) for mega industrial projects around the world. The company was also an importer of bulk minerals from the People’s Republic of China to the United States.

As a former Adjunct Professor at Xavier University (Cincinnati, OH), he taught micro- and macro- economics at under-graduate and MBA levels. His classes were largely composed of mid-level managers from companies such as Lexmark, Long John Silver’s, Honda Motors, and Toyota Motor Manufacturing NA.

Mr. Chen started his career as a private sector developer as the Senior Vice President and Director of Japan Development and Construction Company (JDC). On behalf of JDC he was personally responsible for the development of a $7 billion real estate portfolio across the United States. He was responsible for underwriting corporate investments, structuring partnerships, and negotiating project financing. In his role with JDC, Mr. Chen also played a key role in securing the World Trade Center franchise for Miami (1988) and Consulate General of Japan in Miami (1992). He was a frequent keynote speaker at national/international investment conferences and is included in Who’s Who Worldwide and Who’s Who International.

K. Michael Chen joins the City of Dania Beach Community Redevelopment Agency in November 2020, and looks forward to strengthening the economic core of the DBCRA and catalyzing current and future projects.

Muriel Bryan

Thursday, December 10, 2020 - 4:01pm

Muriel Bryan is the newly appointed Economic Development Manager for the Dania Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA). The CRA is an agency that was created in accordance with FS.163 Part III to help prevent slum and blighted conditions in cities. An integral role of the CRA’s Economic Development Manager is to promote economic development and redevelopment activities by retaining and expanding existing businesses. This is especially important during these trying times where many of our local businesses and residents have drastically been affected by Covid-19.

Ms. Bryan is responsible for planning and executing strategies to attract new businesses to Dania Beach, and encouraging expansion and retention of existing businesses to promote a stronger economic base. She will also work on the CRA’s Small Business Resiliency and Reimbursement Grant, Commercial Improvement Grant, At Home Dania Beach Residential Projects, and the Soleste citywide development, formally known as the Trion.

Before joining the CRA, Ms. Bryan was the Senior Planner in Dania Beach’s Community Development Department. She worked on reviewing multi-million dollar projects the most significant being Dania Pointe which is in the CRA Area. Ongoing development projects have resulted in urban development and economic growth throughout the City.

Muriel also worked with Regional programs like Broward County MPO’s CSLIP Grants, and Safer Streets Program which were awarded and should commence soon.

Prior to her civil service employment with the City of Dania Beach, Muriel had several years of experience working in both the public and private sectors. Having received her Bachelors from Florida Atlantic University in Urban and Regional Planning and later her Masters in Architecture from Florida International University; Muriel also worked at various architectural firms doing BIM/3D and developing Construction Documents for Commercial, Residential, Higher Education and Recreation to name a few. She is also certified in, Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED).

In addition to being the CRA’s Economic Development Manager, Muriel volunteers her time with the local Chapter of the AIA, American Institute of Architects, as the Associate Director. She has also tutored through United Mentors.

Dania Beach CRA Event Advisory

Wednesday, March 11, 2020 - 9:38am

We regret to advise that due to concerns about novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, the Dania Beach CRA Board has decided to halt all plans for the 2020 Arts and Seafood Celebration and cancel upcoming Dania After Dark & Art in the Hall Events until further notice. Please note:

  • The Arts and Seafood Celebration will not be held as planned on March 28th and 29th.
  • Dania After Dark our Monthly Street Festival, and Art in the Hall are postponed until further notice.

We will continue to monitor this national health situation and advise on the possibility of a future date for the Dania Beach Arts & Seafood Celebration and resuming our scheduled Dania After Dark installments in 2020. This decision was made with your health and safety in mind after conversations with Dania Beach city officials and recent announcements from the Florida Department of Health regarding preventative measures to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Dania Beach 8th Annual Arts and Seafood promises fun for All

Friday, February 28, 2020 - 3:03pm

Dania Beach, Florida: The Dania Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) proudly celebrates its 8th annual Dania Beach Arts & Seafood Celebration on Saturday, March 28, from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m., and Sunday, March 29, from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., at Frost Park, 300 NE 2 Street, Dania Beach, FL 33004.

The award-winning event is free and includes live music and entertainment, a live wrestling show by Gangrels Wrestling Asylum, mouthwatering culinary treats, a chef showcase and tastings, the creation of a live sand sculpture, performance arts, artists and crafters, youth art, interactive activities, culinary vendors, dessert artisans, food trucks, children’s activities and more. Free event admission and free parking at the Casino at Dania Beach.

“While you are here, we want you to experience the energy of the city’s growth and redevelopment, and explore the renaissance of Dania Beach’s downtown, City Center and the Design, Arts & Vintage districts,” said Rickelle Williams, executive director, Dania Beach Community Redevelopment Agency.

At the free festival, enjoy live music featuring the headlining tribute band, Kiss Alive: The Kiss Tribute, as well as other musical offerings from Lazy Bonez, musical stylings of the Wolfepak and local R&B celebrity, Kedash and Band, popular rockers Mr. Nice Guy, Dania Beach classic rock bands Whipping Post and the School of Rock band complete the musical lineup.

Bring your appetites to feast on an array of delicious seafood and specialty treats including a tasty culinary display from local culinary masterminds at the Chef Showcase. Chefs will use local and organic ingredients provided by the PATCH (Peoples Access to Community Horticulture), Dania Beach’s community and market garden and the largest in Broward County.

Event goers will also have an opportunity to experience hands-on arts and crafts while admiring and purchasing their favorite creations from fine artists of all genres. There is more than just viewing the art too. Watch and interact with local artists as they paint masterpieces at the street art live performance theater. There will be fun activities including the popular Choo Choo train for children to enjoy at the Kids Funville.

“Dania Beach is Broward County’s first city and well-known for its vibrant arts and marine communities and what better way to celebrate those assets than to present this family-friendly event that has been a big hit year after year,” added Williams.

Dania Beach: Sea It. Live It. Love It.

For more information on the award-winning celebration visit

Dania Beach Soars as Gateway to Broward County Business Opportunities

Friday, October 18, 2019 - 12:00pm

Spirit Airlines is Landing Their New Headquarters in Dania Pointe

Dania Beach, FL (October 18, 2019):  From air to sea and in between, the City of Dania Beach is the gateway to South Florida. As Broward County’s first city to incorporate in 1904, one could say that the city was always in a good place.

On Thursday, October 17, 2019, Spirit Airlines announced that they will be moving their global headquarters, operations center and simulation center to the KIMCO-owned Dania Pointe site, the premier 102-acre, mixed-use development, located within the City of Dania Beach Community Redevelopment area. Spirit Airlines expects to move to a new 500,000 square feet, state-of-the-art Dania Beach headquarters in 2022.

Dania Beach is now, more than ever, positioned as the hub of maritime and aeronautical industries. Dania Beach Mayor Lori Lewellen said, “The City of Dania Beach is glad to welcome Spirit’s new corporate headquarters campus to our city. We are thrilled that the company has chosen to grow here, adding 225 high-value jobs. Spirit will become an important cornerstone in our city. We are excited for their growth as we move forward together into the new decade.”

The Spirit Airlines relocation is expected to have a total economic benefit of $14.87 million for Dania Beach and Broward County, according to Broward County’s Office of Economic and Small Business Development. Spirit Airlines’ capital investment is estimated at between $173million and $250 million over three years for a new headquarters and operations facility and 225 high-wage jobs that are at 150% of the Broward County average annual wage.

The Dania Beach City Commission supports the Dania Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) Board’s 10% local support incentive of $135,000 for the Spirit Airlinesrelocation through the State of Florida’s Qualified Target Industry Tax Refund Program and as a High-Impact Sector Business under the High-Impact Sector Tax Refund Bonus Program with a Brownfield Redevelopment Bonus Refund in addition to $225,000 through a Direct Cash Job Creation Incentive grant. The financial support by the Dania Beach CRA will be provided over a nine-year period beginning with Fiscal Year 2023, which begins October 1, 2022. The Brownfield site has been underused due to environmental concerns. Broward County is also contributing $135,000 in local financial support and matching the CRA’s $225,000 through the Direct Cash Job Creation Incentive program.

Dania Pointe is slated to include almost one million square feet of retail and restaurants in addition to Class A offices, hotels, luxury apartments and public event space. It is conveniently located in between Interstate 95 to the west and Bryan Road to the east and Stirling Road to the south.

Dania Beach's strategic location provides an ideal framework for businesses to relocate to the waterfront city.  Dania Beach is located adjacent to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, which is partially located within the city’s limits, and Port Everglades. The city is rapidly becoming the prime location for new businesses and business relocations. This past August, JetBlue announced the opening of their JetBlue Travel Products subsidiary in Dania Beach. Dania Beach is also home to Chewy, Inc., Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World, Florida Atlantic University's Sea Tech, the American Maritime Officers training and research center,along with first-class marinas and many marine-related businesses.

In 2015, the Dania Beach CRA adopted its redevelopment plan which includes the goal of attracting targeted new industries and retaining and expanding core industries. The incentive programs in the plan are designed to directly stimulate and support private investment in new real estate development, property improvements, new businesses, increased business activity, and as a result thereof creation of new jobs. These programs are needed to eliminate and prevent blighting conditions. The CRA is also empowered to financially subsidize commercial, residential and mixed-use private development projects, including but not limited to, direct grants. The Dania Beach CRA also partners with Enterprise Florida, Inc./Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and Broward County Office of Economic and Small Business Development to provide incentive packages for qualified businesses.