There are few cities that have been burned as badly by a stadium deal as Miami, and few voting blocs that have made politicians pay the price for that mistake quite as much as Miami's. That political atmosphere has made it difficult for David Beckham and his business partners to nail down a site to build a stadium for their MLS team, even if they promise they won't use public money.
Well, it appears Beckham will have to bring his plan before the public before the stadium situation is finally settled.
According to a report from ESPN, both local politicians and Beckham's group have agreed that building a stadium on land adjacent to Marlins Park (the stadium that caused the uproar in the first place) is the most likely option. The City of Miami commission is likely to vote on the deal in December, but a referendum will before voters in March, likely on the same date as Florida's presidential primary.
The city commission will vote on Beckham's proposal to buy land from the city in order to build the stadium. City Manager Daniel J. Alfonso told ESPN that the city wouldn't need to use eminent domain to purchase more land.
Though specific plans for the stadium weren't revealed, prior rumors and plans suggest Beckham would need to acquire a block of privately-owned land where a group of apartment buildings currently sit.
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"I think we're all optimistic that it's going to happen," Commissioner Frank Carollo, who represents the affected district, told ESPN. "Now it's just making sure that it's a good deal all around for the city of Miami, for the Beckham group, and the residents of the city of Miami."
ESPN's sources also claim that the Marlins likely won't play a spoiler in the deal. Their deal with the city gives them power over the adjacent land ... and the possible naming rights to the stadium. (Notably, the Marlins still haven't found a naming-rights partner for their own existing stadium.)
"I can tell you the Marlins have expressed that they would like to have the stadium as a neighbor and that they would try to cooperate to also make it happen," said Carollo. "Right now, there aren't any issues."