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Group Suing Fort Lauderdale, Inter Miami After Losing Out on Bid for Lockhart Stadium Site

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  • The group is being represented by attorney David Winker, who has been a vocal opponent of Beckham’s Inter Miami team.

Weeks after the city of Fort Lauderdale approved a plan to allow the future Major League Soccer team led by a David Beckham to build team facilities on the site of the old Lockhart Stadium, the group that lost out in the bidding process is taking their battle to court.

The Miami Herald is reporting that FXE Futbol, which submitted a bid to turn the area into a stadium complex for a Division 2 soccer team, filed the case in a Broward court on Monday, claiming the city violated state law when evaluating the competing bids.

The group is being represented by attorney David Winker, who has been a vocal opponent of Beckham’s Inter Miami team in their efforts to build a stadium in Miami on the current property of the Melreese golf course – part of a massive project in that area that voters approved last November to allow city officials to negotiate a long-term lease for.

City commissioners unanimously approved a plan April 2nd in which the team would house its training center and youth facilities on the site of the abandoned area that houses both Lockhart and Fort Lauderdale stadiums.

Also being planned would be a 18,000 seat stadium that would house Inter Miami’s minor league team and serve as the home of the MLS franchise for at least two seasons until the Miami stadium can be completed. Beckham’s group has 180 days to complete the demolition as they plan on playing in the stadium next season.

FXE Futbol’s suit claims the city skipped required steps in the process of reviewing both proposals that included not getting outside opinions or an independent analysis.

Attorneys for both Fort Lauderdale and Inter Miami told the paper they will fight the suit.

The current Lockhart Stadium opened in 1959 and was the home of more than a half-dozen soccer teams, including the North American Soccer League's Fort Lauderdale Strikers from 1977-83 and MLS's Miami Fusion from its launch in 1998 until the team was eliminated by the league after the 2001 season.

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