The transformation continues.
Text Mark Williams
OK, so it’s not a “neighborhood” per se… Middle River Drive, from E. Sunrise Boulevard on its southern end to N.E. 26th Street on the north, is technically part of Coral Ridge. But the western side of the street, hugging the coast of the Middle River, feels like its own, special neighborhood. Slowly but surely, this stretch is undergoing a metamorphosis, with smaller, original homes of the 1950s and ‘60s being erased for much larger homes with much larger price tags. The real estate market has not blinked, and homes with sale prices of $2.5 and $3 million no longer cause a stir in a neighborhood where waterfront homes had been routinely in the six figures only ten years ago.
Middle River Drive’s waterfront homes have spectacular river views, but also enjoy long canal views in between the finger isles of Bal Harbour and Laudergate Isles.
Along with this focus on new, larger construction, a handful of meticulous renovations have added to the elegance of this stretch ––-– one within walking distance of George English elementary on its southern end and the shops and restaurants of N. Federal Highway on its northern end. This north end, seemingly set in amber for decades, has seen more activity and upgrading as of late, the most recent addition being the newly completed home at 2549 Middle River Drive, built by Double P Construction. “Middle River Drive is changing quite a lot,” Alessandro Potenti, president of Double P told us recently, “The lots along the east bank of the Middle River are substantially deeper than most of the lots in Coral Ridge, giving us more flexibility in designing the footprint of the house.” Potenti built the home for his family and chose Middle River Drive because it tends to be much wider than a typical Fort Lauderdale canal. “So, not only is it perfect for paddleboarding to ocean access,” he said, “There are amazing views and a bit more privacy than you might get on a canal.
Two blocks south of NE 26th Street, just off Middle River Drive, is tiny Fryer Point. No more than a node pushing into the Middle River, Fryer Point has but a dozen homes, all waterfront. Single-story, mid-century ranch-style homes, once ubiquitous here, are now pretty much a footnote, replaced by much larger homes from the last three decades. Coming in late 2012 is a contemporary, five-bedroom home at 2418 Fryer Point, asking $3,975,000. The home’s general contractor: none other than Double P Construction.
And, although the teardown formula has largely worked along Middle River Drive, and in Coral Ridge in general, there still exists a balance between new and older homes. It is the neighborhood’s good fortune this balance has been maintained.
Currently, there are only a few waterside homes on the market along this stretch of Middle River Drive in Coral Ridge. They range from a $1.87 million asking price for a four-bedroom, three and a half bath home built in 1960 resting on a third of an acre lot, to the eight-bedroom, nine-bath new construction home shown above and listed at $6.9 million.
Just reduced at press time, a home built in 2010 at 2415 Middle River Drive was just reduced to an asking price of $2.799 million. That buys you a gated and lushly landscaped, four-bedroom home with a gorgeous views and a newly-extended, 50-foot dock.
Sold this fall on the waterside was a four-bedroom home built in 1968. The asking price was $2.15 million, but the property sold for just under $1.9 million. Yes, that seems a bargain price for Middle River Drive in 2021, but take note: this home too is scheduled for demolition and new construction.
On The Market Middle River Drive
1529 Middle River Drive
8 bed, 9 bath,
7,700 Square Feet
Beachfront Realty, Inc
2418 Fryer Point
5 bed, 5.5 bath,
4,139 Square Feet
Trust Larry Real Estate
Recently Sold Middle River Drive
2101 Middle River Drive
5 bed, 4.5 bath,
4,041 Square Feet
One Sotheby’s Intl. Realty