Soccer star David Beckham's team presented new plans for a downtown Miami Major League Soccer stadium Thursday.
Beckham's consultant and an investor, part of Miami Beckham United, outlined the plans for a waterfront site and stadium with at least 20,000 seats at a press conference in Miami.
Marcelo Claure, a partner in Miami Beckham United, said the new plan also allows for a bigger public park than the first plan.
“We’re going to put our heart, our passion, our money for the next few months to show the citizens of Miami why this is the right place to put a stadium,” Claure said.
Beckham unveiled designs for a waterfront stadium at PortMiami earlier this year. However, the plan faced resistance from a coalition of political and business leaders led by Royal Caribbean Cruises. Miami-Dade County commissioners also rejected building a stadium at the port on Tuesday.
Beckham is now working with city and county officials to place the stadium at an alternative waterfront site near the American Airlines Arena where the Miami Heat play.
The site is currently occupied by an unused boat slip and would need to be filled in.
Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez recommended the boat slip site earlier this week.
"I can say, what I saw, I liked," Gimenez said. "It's the creation of a bigger park, a better park. The addition of the stadium there that'll enhance the feel and excitement of the park."
The new plan will expand Museum Park by more than 8 acres to make the area not only a soccer draw, but also have more park land and cafes.
Beckham's group has vowed to privately finance the new stadium.
Still, not everyone is a fan of the new plan.
”These plans will actually block the views of the bay,” said Blanca Mesa. “It will introduce a second stadium to the area. We need open green space. One that the city of Miami doesn’t have because we have very little waterfront access.”
As for the issue of parking, the Beckham group doesn’t expect it to be an issue because the stadium will be bringing people to downtown when the area is normally not active. Residents will likely have a chance to vote on the new stadium location later this year.