After more than two years of discussions about David Beckham and professional soccer in Miami, his group of investors has finally purchased private land in Miami for a stadium.
The land is in Overtown, north of the Miami River between Northwest 8th Street and Northwest 6th Street. The land could soon be home to a 25,000-seat, nine-acre soccer stadium.
Beckham had initially wanted the stadium on the water and a giant boat slip next to AmericanAirlines Arena, but that deal failed. He also liked a piece of property at Port Miami, but that also failed.
"We have the right site, the right ownership group, and a loyal base of fans counting down the days until are first match," Beckham partner Marcelo Claure, the CEO of Sprint, said in a statement. "We're all-in on Overtown, and we couldn't be more excited about moving forward with plans to deliver the most responsible stadium in Miami history."
There are still more hurdles to overcome before soccer in Miami is a reality. Now the group needs county approval for public land near the private land purchase, approximately 2.5 acres, and then city approval for proper zoning.
This deal is completely private and no taxpayer dollars would be used to fund the stadium.
Miami Beckham United (MBU) released the following statement Thursday:
David Beckham, Marcelo Claure, Simon Fuller and Tim Leiweke have taken a major step toward bringing an MLS club to Miami and developing a world-class, privately-financed stadium in the City’s Overtown neighborhood. The quartet’s ownership group, Miami Beckham United (MBU), has completed the acquisition of two privateproperties totaling approximately six acres at 650 Northwest 8th Street. The acquisitions open the door to MBU’s purchase of adjacent land required for development, now controlled by Miami-Dade County, at fair market value.
"David, Simon, Tim and I have never been closer to realizing our dream of fielding a soccer club that makes Miami proud," said Marcelo Claure, MBU partner and Sprint CEO. "We have the right site, the right ownership group, and a loyal base of fans counting down the days until our first match. We’re all-in on Overtown, and we couldn't be more excited about moving forward with plans to deliver the most responsible stadium in Miami history."
MBU is taking a responsible approach to the planning process by engaging the community, emphasizing the location’s access to public transit and prioritizing walkability. The stadium site is situated midway Miami Beach and Miami International Airport, within walking distance of downtown Miami and two blocks from the Miami River District. The Culmer Metrorail station is three blocks away, 7,000 parking spaces are within a 10 minute walk, and All Aboard Florida's new rail terminal is within a half-mile, ensuring fans will have several options for arriving and departing on game day.
Once the County-controlled property is acquired, MBU will enter the formal entitlement process with the goal of earning City and County approval for its development plans. In the meantime, MBU principals will continue meeting with area businesses, residents and community organizations in an effort to understand the neighborhood’s priorities and establish a dialogue heading into design and development phase.