In this role, Escarra will work closely with Lucia A. Dougherty, on continuing to develop the firm’s land use, zoning and real estate development practice in Miami-Dade County.
“Iris has proven herself as an invaluable asset to our land development practice and we look forward to her leadership in helping to support the growth of one of South Florida’s most important industries,” said Rick Giusto, co-managing shareholder of the Miami office and a real estate shareholder.
Escarra, who joined the firm in 2005 from the City of Miami City Attorney’s Office, specializes in land use, zoning and procurement law. She is board certified by The Florida Bar as an expert in City, County and Local Government Law.
“It is a great honor to serve as Co-Chair of a practice group that is part of Greenberg Traurig’s heritage in Miami and continues to play a key role in helping to grow our region’s economy,” Escarra said. “I look forward to working closely with Lucia and my colleagues at Greenberg Traurig to continue to meet our clients’ legal needs and provide the effective, efficient legal counsel for which our Land Development Practice is known.”
Escarra represents landowners and developers in every phase of property development and operations. Her work covers a wide-range of industry sectors including residential, hotel, retail, commercial and mixed-uses, and institutional uses such as affordable housing, educational facilities, medical buildings, places of worship and museums. She is a former Assistant City Attorney for the city of Miami.
Escarra is active in numerous professional associations including the Commercial Real Estate Women, Commercial Real Estate Development Association and Urban Land Institute. Throughout her career, Escarra has received numerous awards and accolades. Most recently, these have included: Team Member, a U.S. News - Best Lawyers "Government Relations Law Firm of the Year," 2014 (Ranked, Tier 1 – Government Relations, Miami Metropolitan Area); Listed, South Florida Legal Guide, "Top Lawyers in South Florida," 2012-2014; Member, Winning Team, Chambers USA Award for Excellence, Real Estate, 2013; Team Member, a Law360 "Real Estate Practice Group of the Year," 2013; Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, Florida Super Lawyers, "Rising Star," 2009-2013; Listed, "Top Up and Comers," South Florida Legal Guide, 2008-2012.
Escarra received her law degree from St. Thomas University School of Law in 2001 and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Florida International University in 1997.
The attorneys with the Greenberg Traurig Land Development Practice Group have represented landowners in developing significant and challenging projects since the firm was founded in Miami in 1967. With wide-ranging experience encompassing virtually every type of development project, they often begin their representation when projects are mere concepts proposed for vacant land, without any permits or approvals. Often, they see the projects develop through to the issuances of building permits and certificates of occupancy. Their work includes due diligence investigations, public and private financing, land use entitlement and construction permitting for major projects including: new communities; large-scale suburban residential, high-rise/urban office, condominium and mixed use developments; retail shopping centers; hotel, resort and golf course projects; rock mining activities; marina permitting; and brownfields redevelopment.