Financial News

  • 11 June 2014, 19:11

David Beckham: Miami Rejects New Stadium Plan

David Beckham has suffered a major setback in his plans to set up a football team in Miami after a second proposed stadium site was rejected.

The former Manchester United idol and England captain wanted to build an arena over an old boat dock in the city centre.

But Miami's mayor Tomas Regalado and other senior figures in the city said after a meeting that they felt that the spot, called the FEC slip, was not the right site.

A statement from the consortium Beckham has put together said: "Miami Beckham United and City of Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado met today to discuss a path forward for bringing a Major League Soccer club to Miami.

"Mayor Regalado and the City Manager expressed their belief that the FEC slip is an inappropriate location for a soccer stadium."

It is the second site that Beckham has had turned down.

He originally wanted to build a $250m open-air stadium with 25,000 seats at PortMiami, but opposition from shipping interests and local authorities scuppered that plan.

The alternative site was a waterfront pier in congested downtown Miami, between a museum park and the American Airlines Arena where the Miami Heat basketball team plays.

The consortium also proposed landscaping the surrounding area into parkland with a new waterfront.

According to the statement, Beckham presented a financial offer that included a privately funded stadium, fair payments for the use of the land and no use of public funds.

CBS Miami reported that local people were unhappy with the dock being filled in and video footage showed a number of signs in windows nearby opposing the plan.

Beckham and Major League Soccer (MLS) - the US and Canada's top flight football league - announced plans for the new franchise in Miami in February.

If his stadium plans had been successful, it was expected that his team would have begun playing in 2017.

MLS is a closed league, with 19 teams, set to rise to 21 in 2015, divided into Eastern and Western conferences.

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