Sun Life Stadium Upgrade: Miami-Dade Taxpayers Should Fund It

I'm with Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross on this one. The county and state should give the team public funds to help defray the $400 million cost of upgrading Sun Life Stadium. The Dolphins' home has done more to boost the local economy than the American Airlines Arena, the BB&T Center, and Marlins Park ever have.

This is a good investment that will generate money for the people. Every time Sun Life Stadium hosts the Orange Bowl, the BCS National Championship Game, the Super Bowl, and major international soccer matches, everybody gets paid, from police officers to cabbies to concierges to exotic dancers. What's more, Sun Life Stadium gets more use than the other three sports venues.

The University of Miami is a permanent tenant. The stadium hosts top-of-the-line soccer teams from around the world. Every one of those games sells out because South Florida has hundreds of thousands of Latin American fútbol fans. Sun Life is also the only place where a diverse variety of events can be staged — from the Monster Jam truck show to the Jazz in the Gardens music festival.

We also have to give the Dolphins organization credit for investing money back into the community. The other sports franchises in the region — the Miami Heat, the Miami Marlins, and the Florida Panthers — do not invest as much in community outreach. The team has paid tens of thousands of dollars to renovate football fields at dozens of parks in Miami-Dade. Three years ago, Ross, the Dolphins, and the NFL donated a $164,000 grant to Miami Beach Senior High to renovate its on-campus football and soccer practice field. The team also allows high schools to host football games at the stadium and share in the gate revenues.

We have yet to see the Marlins fulfill their promise of building and renovating youth baseball fields across Miami-Dade. And the only youth basketball gym involving the Heat is Alonzo Mourning's Overtown Youth Center. That's a damn shame when you consider the Heat is the most prominent basketball team in the NBA and is led by LeBron James, the most dominant player in the nation. The Heat should be building basketball courts and gymnasiums throughout the county. And has the Heat ever hosted a local high school basketball game?

Sun Life Stadium is worth the money.

Follow Luke on Twitter: @unclelukereal1.

 
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4 comments
kjr1962
kjr1962

I DO NOT agree. Why should the tax payers fund this project.  Why not cut the multi-million dollar salaries of the players, coaches and owners. They are the only ones who are benefitting, NOT ME.  I do not watch professional sports anymore, and I cannot afford to go see a game in person, so it does not benefit me to help with the upgrade.

miamimike50
miamimike50

If we have to spend 400 million it would be better used to send the dullfins packing to another city and be done with this organization of losers.................

bhndenemylines
bhndenemylines

You bring up valid points Luke.  The Dolphins do a lot for South Florida when compared to the other local teams. I just don't agree with taxpayers having to fit the bill every time some billionaire wants to increase his profits.  Its not like he reduces his prices for tickets, concessions, or merchandise for this tax payer loan. 

In most cases the money that is funded by the community is used to earn more profits for the aforementioned billionaire then it does putting money back into the community.  Check out the documentary "Battle in Brooklyn" about the Barclays Center to see how many hundreds of millions the owner of the Nets made after the city paid for his project. 

Ross should ask his ownership group to fit the bill.  Make the Williams sisters, Mark Anthony, J-Lo, Jimmy Buffet, and Gloria Estefan pony up the dough.  I am sure they have enough to cover the cost. 

EVERYBODY SAY HEY - HEY- WE DON'T WANT TO PAY! 

run.randrand
run.randrand

THE PUBLIC FUNDING IT WAS N-O-T THE INITIAL PITCH, FOOLS! WHY ARE WE EVEN "GOING THERE???! THESE "CREEPIN' JESUS " PROJECTS TAKE OVER THE WHOLE YARD-AND END UP SITTING DOWN AT YOUR ALREADY SPARTAN TABLES AND EATING Y-O-U-R FOOD AND OTHER BUDGETS! THANKS-BUT-"NO THANKS"!!!

 
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