Battle continues over Beckham’s proposed Miami stadium site

Miami stadium rendering 4

By RYAN TOLMICH

The first opposition David Beckham’s Miami MLS team faces may not be a fellow MLS side like the Chicago Fire or the Portland Timbers. Rather, it appears as if the expansion team’s first matchup will come with opposition of a different nature: a cruise line.

John Fox, former Vice President of Royal Caribbean Cruises and currently of the Miami Seaport Alliance, appeared on a Miami talk show alongside John Alschuler, real estate advisor to David Beckham, to discuss the proposed PortMiami stadium deal.

The two debated and dissected the potential privately funded stadium, with Fox citing the fact that he supported soccer in Miami, but not at the location due to shipping and cargo needs.

However, Alschuler pointed out that Royal Caribbean’s current “sweetheart deal” for the site came in well below market value, which is something the ownership group is willing to pay.

“Carnival pays market rate. Norwegian pays market rate,” said Alschuler to describe the $3 million per year expected to be charged for the property. “We will pay rent — unlike Royal Caribbean, we will pay market rent.”

Fox questioned the stadium’s usefulness, citing that it would only be used 24-to-25 days a year, while also calling Royal Caribbean the “biggest developer” of the area. Meanwhile, Alschuler described the vision for a commercial development in the area, which would see cruise passenger traffic unaffected by both Miami soccer games and Miami Heat basketball games.

“We need a site that can communicate to the whole world the beauty of Miami, the excitement of Miami. It needs to be downtown. It needs to be near the water,” Alschuler said. “And we’re open to any alternative that can move this community in the 21st century.”

“If you think you can come down here from New York,” said Fox in response, “and tell this community after 125 years that Beckham is going to help us go into the 21st century — I think that’s a little bit insulting.”

With both sides set to do battle over the proposed location, it appears that Miami soccer’s biggest test will come off-the-field before they can get onto a field of their own.

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Do you think Beckham and his group will get their deal? What do you think of the stadium plan?

Share your thoughts below.

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11 Responses to Battle continues over Beckham’s proposed Miami stadium site

  1. cabrito says:

    Las Vegas Beckhams FC!!

  2. reignman says:

    I think ultimately they end up getting a stadium but I just don’t think it’ll happen in the area they are hoping for. The cruise line industry is really powerful and to go toe to toe with them would take ages and there is a chance they don’t even win in the end.

  3. LImey says:

    Honestly it seems like Beckham always end up getting his way, plus it sounds like the cruise ship people are just negotiating.

  4. True Dat says:

    “If you think you can come down here from New York,” said Fox in response, “and tell this community after 125 years that Beckham is going to help us go into the 21st century — I think that’s a little bit insulting.”

    I almost spit out my coffee reading this one. The whole history of that place is built around people coming from New York – and the rest of the country, and world for that matter- shaping it in their image, not that of the “community”.

    • SilverRey says:

      This from a guy who makes his living throwing his Royal Caribbean weight against natives around the world.

  5. MLSsnob says:

    “The first opposition David Beckham’s Miami MLS team faces may not be a fellow MLS side like the Chicago Fire” something tells me that wouldn’t happen regardless, I can’t remember the last time the fire have anyone opposition.

  6. BamaMan says:

    I don’t live in Miami but I closely followed the controversy over the Marlins stadium. Even though this is privately financed, I think the public appetite for this kind of thing is much lower than it once was. We’ll see what happens but I bet this stadium deal never materializes.

  7. milbo says:

    It probably comes down to what the numbers are. The cruise line, although a heavy hitter that brings in a lot of $$$, probably doesn’t pay its fair share of taxes. Beckham’s stadium may generate more. The cruise line can probably find another spot since Miami is key to its business

  8. tga says:

    i am sure the stadium ownership will find other uses for the stadium…when MLS is not in season…

  9. NASL to El Paso tx says:

    Beckham will get his stadium no matter what in Miami but the location is the question?
    I think Beckham is the perfect person to help Miami with soccer and with posh connections of model and fashion, might as name it inter Miami city