Making changes to a historical home, no matter how drastic, usually means jumping through a number of hoops and occasionally fighting some backlash.
“Real Housewives of Miami” star Lisa Hochstein and her husband, plastic surgeon Leonard Hochstein, have applied to get permission to bulldoze their historic home at 42 Star Island Dr, Miami Beach, FL 33139. The couple plan to erect a 14,000-square-foot mansion with a five-car garage in its place, reports The Miami Herald.
According to property records, the Hochsteins bought the Miami Beach home at a foreclosure auction for just $2 million last year. The purchase marked a 81 percent discount from the previous listing price of $10.5 million.
Star Island is home to a number of high-end homes, including mansions owned by Will Smith, Shaq, as well as Emilio and Gloria Estefan.
The Hochsteins didn’t plan on razing the home when they first bought it, but they reported damage due to water leaks, cockroaches and other structural problems in an engineer’s report turned into the city.
According to The Miami Herald, the report said “the home’s life expectancy was only about 40 years, and it should have toppled decades ago.” Preservationists took issue with the findings, however, stating that after inspecting the residence, the home could be restored.
While city staff recommended approval for the demolition, the Miami Design Preservation League filed to get the home designated as a historic landmark. Although such designation was delayed, spokespeople representing the League believe their efforts will still sway the Miami Design Review Board’s decision.
The review board’s verdict could be revealed as early as this week. If the Hochsteins do get approval, the preservationists can appeal.