Just as the MLS is an aberration in the global soccer market, public financing of stadiums is an equal American trait. The Seattle Supersonics being moved from the pacific northwest to the dust bowl of Oklahoma City was unthinkable in many peoples' minds, but it happened. Remember that the next time you buy Starbucks. The coffee shop magnate owner Howard Schultz sold the crown jewel of Seattle sports. Why? Because he couldn't get a sweetheart deal to build a new stadium. It seems that David Beckham's new ownership group is sizing up the city of Miami for a new stadium/condo/retail space that will make the former Galaxy player a lot of money. As these stadium deals go it sounds much better than it will turn out.
Oklahoma City built a state of the art winter sport stadium before they had a team. Not even an agreement for an expansion team. Eventually, the Sonics landed in Oklahoma. Kansas City did the same thing and all they get is minor leagues and a few college sports championships. A pro sports team has not moved there. Now the ownership group headed by David Beckham wants to bring MLS back to Miami and to give his group part of the Port of Miami in the process. After what happened to the city when Miami gave the Marlins a sweetheart deal, it will be tough because of the history of the MLS in the city. Even the Miami Dolphins, who have been the most consistent draw in Miami sports for decades, couldn't get a fraction of what Beckham's asking for when the Dolphins ownership team recently approved remodeling of their stadium. Not that the Dolphins didn't try.
It would be one thing if a new Miami team was an expansion into a fresh market. But the MLS already failed there. They couldn't get the public's money from just the product. They want to build a commercial real estate project and have an MLS team as a write off. There are many other markets that would support a team. Florida didn't and they will not again. Miami has the closest Major League Baseball team to the Caribbean and they cant get a half-full stadium. The city should be a perfect place for sports in the melting pot of Miami. Except for the Dolphins, Miami only supports a winner.
So not only does he want to not pay property taxes on the proposed stadium site, he wants his group to be able to develop the land, which happens to be the busiest cruise ship port on the planet. Having as much as 100% more traffic on the port will interrupt the punctuality of a transportation industry. If I were the city of Miami I would not try to anger the industry that actually pays a lot of the taxes that come into the city and state. Hopefully the cruise ship bosses have more pull than David Beckham does.
That shouldn't be that hard since Beckham really has no connection to the area other than his wife performing many concerts there. It would be like John Elway moving to Vancouver and trying to get the city to build a brand new NFL stadium on the water on the off chance that a franchise moves there. I can't help but think that if the people of Miami pay for this reprehensible idea that Florida should take over their local government for incompetence. The message from Miami to David Beckham should be as follows, "Thanks but no thanks. If you want to live here that's ok. But we have plenty of other things to do. MLS didn't work here. You can afford a plane ride to St. Louis, the twin cities, or Atlanta. We're good." This plan sounds like the plot to the sequel of Chinatown. Don't fall for it Miami. Enjoy your many other recreational activities. Maybe do something about the homeless tent cities before we give Beckham all this money and anger the profitable industries in the area.