Crains reports the sale of a vacant parcel in the fashionable North State Street neighborhood for $70 million — $4075 per square foot. The article says that “Under a zoning agreement the city approved in 2006, a developer could build as many as 261 residential units on the parcel,” which would work out to about $268,000 land cost per unit. You can buy a nice residential lot in many decent neighborhoods for a lot less than $268,000 (and in less-decent neighborhoods land is practically free). Perhaps the buyer is expecting to obtain an increase in permitted density.
The article also reports that the seller, a “Miami-based developer” who has held the parcel only four months, will realize a $42 million profit. It’s unfortunate that none of this profit goes to support the intensive and expensive infrastructure which helps keep the neighborhood functional.