SeaVee Boats is just weeks away from beginning construction on a new 220,000sq ft manufacturing facility which will consolidate its five sites around Miami, Florida into one, nearly doubling its footprint and expecting to add up to 100 jobs.
The Miami-Dade County Industrial Development Authority fully financed the project.
“We originally bought our current facility thinking it would be large enough. But the economy is doing well, so the business is doing well,” company co-founder Ariel Parel told Miami Today. “We’ve outgrown the facility. We’re bursting at the seams right now.”
Currently, SeaVee is able to produce up to 165 custom boats per year. The company hopes to raise that number to 250 annually within three years.
The project has faced several hurdles along the way. The Environmental Protection Agency put the property on the Superfund’s National Priorities clean-up List in 1984. Electrical transformers were recycled on the site, which led to waste oil being dumped into the ground and rusted machinery left on the property. The land is slated to be removed from the National Priorities List in July, for a full return to industrial activity with no threat to health.
Parel noted that while other boatbuilders are moving out of South Florida, due to the high price of real estate, the lack of available real estate suitable for boat manufacturing and a more expensive workforce, he believes it is the perfect location for SeaVee.
“The most skilled workforce in boat manufacturing is in South Florida,” he said. “Not the most affordable, but we feel that because of the type of product we make – boutique and high-end boats – we’re able to spend more to build a better product.”