MIAMI – David Beckham’s dream of building a proper home for his Inter Miami is facing the gatekeepers of the public land that he and billionaire Jorge Mas have chosen.
They want to develop about 130 acres — including more than 70 acres for the 25,000-seat soccer stadium — at the International Links Melreese Country Club, 1802 NW 37th Ave.
Miami commissioners must decide if the deal as it stands is in the best interest of the city. They are discussing it on Thursday at City Hall in Coconut Grove.
The investors behind the home of Miami’s Major League Soccer team would have to spend big to move out of their current Fort Lauderdale home.
About $50 million to clean up the arsenic and lead and to create a nearly 60-acre public park. The incinerator ash was used as a filler there before the golf course was built.
About $50 million annually on property taxes and the cost of leasing the land as part of a no-bid 99-year lease. The plan also includes $1 billion in commercial real estate.
Commissioner Manolo Reyes is standing firmly against it. The Cuban-American represents District 4, less than 10 blocks from the golf course’s southern boundary.
To stand against the deal, William “Billy Corben” Cohen recently launched the “Don’t Bend Over For Beckham” campaign.
“The voters overwhelmingly chose the soccer stadium over the country club. But I will not vote for a deal if it’s not good for the city,” Miami Commissioner Ken Russell wrote on April 23rd in response to the campaign.
For the campaign, the documentary film director behind “Cocaine Cowboys” and “The U” recruited David Samson, the former president of the Miami Marlins of Major League Baseball.
“Scheme is worse than the Marlins Park boondoggle,” Cohen wrote in an April 19th tweet that had been shared more than 1,080 times by Thursday afternoon.
This is a developing story.
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