Retail rents are on the rise in Miami-Dade County, despite the doom and gloom surrounding retail nationwide. A first quarter report from Colliers International South Florida shows asking rent increased to $39.59 per square foot, up 14.5 percent from $34.56 per square foot a year ago. The vacancy rate increased slightly to 3.8 percent, up from 3.6 percent in the first quarter of 2017. About 1.9 million square feet of retail space is under construction, adding to the nearly 432,000 square feet that was delivered in the first quarter. Projects under construction include the retail component of Miami Worldcenter, parts of the Miami Design District, and smaller developments in Miami Beach, like the Trader Joe’s-anchored 17 West. In addition to the Design District, Bal Harbour Shops and Aventura Mall are also expanding. Whitman Family Development is adding more than 340,000 square feet to Bal Harbour Shops’ existing 450,000 square feet of retail space, and the new area will be anchored by the first Barneys New York in Florida. Aventura Mall’s owners, Turnberry Associates, recently opened a $214 million new wing, which features 315,000 square feet of retail space. Read more at The Real Deal.