Miguel Diaz de la Portilla focuses his practice on local government law, particularly land use and zoning and government procurement. With decades of experience as a land use and zoning attorney in Miami-Dade County, Miguel represents major developers in securing government approvals for large scale residential, commercial, mixed use, and/or retail projects before various municipal and county governments. He is also a skilled civil litigator who has represented clients in matters before state and federal courts and an array of administrative bodies.

Miguel served two terms as a Miami-Dade County Commissioner, including his service as Chairman of the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners, where he created the Office of Inspector General, the Miami-Dade County Expressway Authority (MDX), the Downtown Dadeland Charrette, Downtown Dadeland Zoning Ordinance, and the Community Zoning Appeals Boards. Miguel also served as a board member and chairman of the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority (TriRail), as well as a board member of the South Florida Regional Planning Council and the Builders Association of South Florida.

Notably, Miguel was an elected Florida State Senator from 2010-2016. During that time, Miguel served as a ranking member of the Florida Senate from Miami-Dade County, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and a key member of the Senate Transportation and Economic Development Appropriations sub-committee.

Miguel’s practice is expressly Florida-focused at the state and local levels, including the resolution of land use and zoning issues in urban areas and cities throughout the state. Miguel’s extensive public and government service support him in providing a unique perspective and keen insight into the mindset of public policy advisers, decision makers, and city and county commissioners.

Miguel is dedicated to aggressively prosecuting his clients’ interests and to providing fearless advocacy at all levels of Florida government. Because he has been involved in matters that resulted in changed policy and the creation of new categories of the zoning code, Miguel seeks to advance client objectives even when a change in the law is needed. He is frequently involved in advocacy where political undercurrents and the opposition are not only challenging and difficult, but also well-financed and organized.

  • Obtained land use and zoning approval and negotiated development agreement for the largest retail entertainment center in the history of Miami-Dade County.
  • Obtained $180 Million dollar contract with Miami-Dade County for a multinational transportation technology company.
  • Obtained zoning approval for the largest K – 12 charter school in Miami-Dade County.
  • Represented Fixed Based Operator Client (FBO) in successfully replacing long term incumbent at Miami International Airport.
  • Represented duty free provider in successfully replacing long term incumbent at Miami International Airport.
  • Represented Toll Management technology company in obtaining contracts with numerous municipalities within Miami-Dade and Broward Counties, including the City of Miami, Doral, Hialeah and Homestead.
  • Obtained approval for first-ever rural kennel in Miami-Dade County.
  • Obtained approval on a 380-acre site for master planned community including 2,000 single family homes and a K-12 charter school.
  • AV Rated as independently determined by Martindale-Hubbell
  • South Florida Legal Guide, “Top Lawyer,” 2020-21
  • Daily Business Review, “Attorney of the Year”, 2019
  • Florida Trend, “Legal Elite,” 2009
  • “Engaging Communities and Fostering Inclusivity in Miami’s Real Estate Development,” Bisnow: Miami State of the Market, moderator, September 12, 2023
  • The Florida Bar
    • City, County and Local Government Section
    • Environment and Land Use Section

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