Beckham & Mas Admit They Are Considering Taxpayer Funding For Park Cleanup

David Beckham and Jorge Mas are agreeing to concessions, ahead of a key commission meeting tomorrow on their $1b project.

Mas told the Herald yesterday that he would seek state and federal funding for cleanup of toxic waste known to be buried at the park site, instead of city funding. He implied that he has set aside some funding for cleanup, but doesn’t yet know the cost (Mas said last week it could cost over $100 million.)

Other concessions made by Mas:

  • Will pay 1 percent of gross proceeds to the city if any of the buildings to be developed are sold
  • Will pay an unspecified percentage of revenue from operations, in addition to $3.5 million rent
  • Will hold community meetings with neighbors of the park for the first time

Still unknown is where the developers will replace up to 73 acres of lost green space, as required by city law under a No Net Loss of Park Land policy. Mas is said to have been considering using the Underline for this purpose, something Commissioner Ken Russell said he would not accept.

Also unclear is who will fund cost of building the 3,750 space parking garages and surface lots. For the Marlins, the city issued around $100 million in bonds for garages with 5,700 spaces.

Cost responsibility for other infrastructure, including roadways in and around the park, also has yet to be clarified.

Mas is pressuring the city to act fast, claiming he is required by MLS to begin construction by October 2019 or the city could lose the franchise – reminiscent of the Marlins claims they would move to San Antonio in 2009.

In contrast to Mas, Beckham assured fans at a rally last week that he would be bringing a team to Miami “no matter what.”

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Anonymous
3 years ago

Vote no!! Still believe overtown is the best option…

Anonymous
3 years ago

I wonder why the Beckham Group never considered the truck depot near Jackson Memorial Hospital option?

Anonymous
3 years ago

Could be a backup site.

marc
3 years ago

Where’s the truck depot?

Anonymous
3 years ago

It’s a city owned 20-23 acre truck depot that I think is somewhere around N.W. 12th Ave and 20th St.

marc
3 years ago

Ok Thanks. Is it the Miami General Services Administration? It’s next to Santa Clara Metro Rail Station.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Can’t really pinpoint the location marc, but I believe the Santa Clara Metro Rail Station is reported to be nearby.

Anonymous
3 years ago

I do prefer the Overtown location as well, however I am concerned if by voting No we will lose our chance to get an MLS Franchise. So as a true soccer fan, I am voting yes.

Suomynona
3 years ago

I want MLS, too. And I’m still voting NO!

It’s possible to both have MLS and have Beckham/Mas do it the right way.

Anonymous
3 years ago

I believe Beckham and Mas synergy will evaporate if the Melreese deal falls through. I with you, I’d prefer Miami get its share of soccer and all its worldwide reverberation will pay off itself

Suomynona
3 years ago

There’s not going to be “worldwide reverberation”. An MLS team isn’t a “gamechanger”.

It’s a fun hobby for local residents. That’s about it. It’s unlikely to even bring any substantial new tax base into the community.

Gene
3 years ago

Correcto!!

Suomynona
3 years ago

Haha. This project is dead. Even if they get County approval for a November vote, the mere fact they’ve admitted the use of taxpayer funding to cleanup the park after promising for YEARS to be 100% privately funded should kill this.

P*ss off, Beckham/Mas.

Your future home in Overtown awaits.

Suomynona
3 years ago

City* approval

“taxpayer funding” + shady, backroom deals for publicly owned land = dead in the water

Anonymous
3 years ago

Once these “businessmen” get their hands on public land, you can forget about any promises they’ve made….the City will be on the hook for the next 50 years, using our tax dollars to support private profit.

Gene
3 years ago

Don’t let them do this to us, Miami.

Anonymous
3 years ago

These guys are going to take all of us for a ride to the bank to empty out the city’s bank account!! WHAT A JOKE!!

Anonymous
3 years ago

” To Seek Taxpayer Funding ” Buhahahahah!!! I’m dead.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Oh NoOoOoOOoOoOoOOoOoooooooooooooO. this is the worst deal, maybe in history!

Anonymous
3 years ago

Thank you Mr. Perez, dooly noted!

Anonymous
3 years ago

The city losing the franchise is a lie. They definitely have a backup plan which will be announced 1 week after tomorrow if commissioners reject putting this on the ballot.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Might end up on the Herald site.

Anonymous
3 years ago

It couldn’t, because it would cost too much for that piece of land.

Anonymous
3 years ago

They could partner with Genting and both make money. Genting aren’t getting their gambling anytime soon.

Anonymous
3 years ago

The Genting Group makes enough money to wait it out.

Polo
3 years ago

That will be a perfect place, but Genting is not selling.

Anonymous
3 years ago

“A back up plan” ??
The back up plan was the lot next to the AAA Arena.
Then the one next to the Marlins
Then Overtown
And then the Airport.
SMH

Anonymous
3 years ago

Another option that was floated around is the city owned truck depot land near Jackson Memorial Hospital.

Suomynona
3 years ago

They actually own the land in Overtown. That is a very realistic option.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Norman Braman rubbing his hands right now about to get Francis Suarez out of office if this goes through.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Let’s face it, Francis Suarez got himself elected with the famous name, the cute face, and a blank slate of a resume. Now we will get to see what he’s really made of.

Gene
3 years ago

The new Dynasty that we don’t want.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Norman Brahman is a joke. Anyone who funds Marco Rubio should be ignored!

Anonymous
3 years ago

So they should fund far leftist to be pro-crime, anti-gun and pro-debt.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Funny how you righties claim to be so “pro-law enforcement” but you’re ready to whip out pitchforks and torches on Mueller.

Alex Candee
3 years ago

I like Mas, especially as a UM alum… but using the underline as the park space? Come on. I know land is tight in Miami, but grab parcels here and there in the actual city at the very least.

Anonymous
3 years ago

The Overtown site is a viable alternative that will likely be pursued.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Act Fast! Limited-time offer! If you call within the next 10 minutes, you’ll receive an office park free! Don’t lose this AMAZING opportunity! lol what hucksters

Polo
3 years ago

VOTE NO! THIS WHOLE THING SMELL LIKE A SCAM!

Anonymous
3 years ago

Of course he does.

Anonymous
3 years ago

I notice none of the pro-Beckham/Mas-at-Melreese people are here today. Looks like them admitting to taxpayer funding has taken the wind out of their sails.

Anonymous
3 years ago
Anonymous
3 years ago

This was published exactly one year ago on the Biscayne Times paper.

City Finds Itself in Conflict with Itself

MIAMI CAN’T “CO-APPLY” WITH LEGION PARK DEVELOPERS TO SIDESTEP ITS OWN ZONING REGS

Commissioner Francis Suarez, a candidate for Miami city mayor, has stated that apprehension from residents over mega-projects is why he proposed the SAP ordinance in the first place. At the very least, Suarez reasoned at a May 25 commission meeting, the city should avoid being co-applicants of the very projects that municipal planning staffers must judge.

“I think there’s a conflict problem with us scrutinizing application, and I think there’s a secondary problem, which is people using our land to fulfill a nine-acre requirement to get a SAP,” Suarez said.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Is this place a “toxic waste site” or is it a “park?”

Anonymous
3 years ago

Depends on the specific question. And astrological signs. Or something.

marc
3 years ago

It’s toxic a few feet underground. It’s been capped to be safe. Once you dig to build you’re dealing with toxic materials.

Anonymous
3 years ago

I bet many people who are against this proposal didn’t know that this site was once a toxic waste dump site.

marc
3 years ago

Probably. A lot of the parks in Miami are former toxic waste dumps.

Anonymous
3 years ago

The parks are often used as storage space after hurricanes.

Anonymous
3 years ago

The Village of Merrick Park was built on an old Gables dump site. Miami has a history of using waste and dump sites as public space and parks.

Golf Course
3 years ago

It is a taxpayers owned site zoned Civic Space i.e. park and its is used by an 18 hole golf course.

Steve Hagen, Green Park Advocate
3 years ago

As long as toxic waste is not disturbed it is fine to use it as parkland. Read my 16 points below as I suggest leaving 9 holes of golf cutting clean up by 50%. Steve Hagen. Stevenmia@aol.com

aceraroja
3 years ago

Well of course. A Mas never made a dime they didn’t connive from a government coffee.

aceraroja
3 years ago

Hah *coffer. The coffee is for the backslapping meetings to apportion tax money into their pockets.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Hah, you meant to say “appropriate.”

aceraroja
3 years ago

No I meant apportion, a word often used to describe the distribution of tax monies.

aceraroja
3 years ago

How many stadiums will this make? 5? Minus the ghost of the Miami Arena, which also did jack shit for downtown except accelerate the bulldozing of historic buildings for parking lots.

It is a No Bid Contract
3 years ago

No Bid Contract. Hotel. Offices. Mall. It is a No-Bid contract.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Voters will decide this November.

Steve Hagen, Green Park Advocate
3 years ago

As a well informed green park advocate in Miami since 1996, I have presented Mayor Suarez and Commissioners a list of 16 points they need to meet in order to mak this project acceptable. If these points can be met in addition to the financial concern, Miami residents city wide may have good reasons to vote for this proposal.

These 16 points can be viewed on Facebook at a group named More Parks for MiMi NOW. Steve Hagen. 305 754 0099. Stevenmia@aol.com

Steve Hagen, Green Park Advocate
3 years ago

Correction: Go to More Parks for Miami NOW on Facebook.

Steve Hagen
3 years ago

Will see if this document will post.

Dear Miami Residents who are very concerned about and don’t understand what may happen with about 123 acres of parkland owned by Miami residents, known as MELREESE GOLF COURSE. YOU MAY ALSO SIGN THE PETITION found at More Parks for Miami NOW also on Facebook. Over 400 SIGNERS TO date.

I encourage you to share this post.

You may have received this already via email. If so, look at this copy as there are changes.

I hope you have been paying attention to the proposal before the Miami City Commission to eliminate the City owned Melreese Golf Course / Country Club near the airport in exchange for a soccer complex and huge hybrid office / entertainment / shopping complex.

Below is an email I sent to Miami Mayor Suarez and Commissioners.

I hope you will agree with many of my 16 points.

I urge you to give your thoughts to the Mayor and Commissioners ASAP . (just copy their email addresses below)

If you send via email, I would appreciate being blind copied if you so choose. stevenmia@aol.com

As most, I am not fully informed about the details of the proposed development but I do know what great green parks need in order to attract repeat users on regular basis. If parks are not pleasant and have interesting landscaping to draw residents, they will fail.

I believe the proposed 58 acre of park in this location will fail and ultimately will also be covered with more commercial activity.

I know what is in the Parks Master Plan which the Commissioners should follow for the benefit of all residents city wide, not just those in the area of this proposal, nor only soccer fans.

Hold them to the Parks Master Plan!

There is HUGE opportunity here for 25 NEW neighborhood parks, IF they get it right.

But Mayor Suarez and Commission must act before the November vote. They must clarify and put in writing what is meant by “no net loss of parkland” amoung other items that need to occur as detailed below.

Otherwise, be prepared to spend money to defeat Beckham and Mas and vote NO.

Steve Hagen 305 754 0099

—–Original Message—–
From: Steve Hagen
To: WGort ; KRussell ; JCarollo ; MReyes ; KHardemon ;FSuarez, FSuarez@miamigov.com

Sent: Sun, Jul 15, 2018 9:12 pm
Subject: Email & attachment on Freedom Park proposal

Miami Commissioners,

Please study my 16 points below on the
Miami Freedom Park proposal.

From the feedback I have received from residents on an email to hundreds of
Miami residents and leaders, you must provide park land replacement among other things or there will be a lot of very angry no voters.

Steve Hagen 305 754 0099

File: 16 points to make Freedom Park Proposal Fly, 4 pages.

July 16, 2018

An open letter to City of Miami Mayor Suarez and Commissioners,

I ask all of you to acknowledge receipt of this document.

Some of you know me as a very active advocate for green parks that are well landscaped as to create a desire in all age residents to want to enjoy them on regular repeat basis.

All size parks should be a source of pride to enjoy, not an uninteresting “open space” to be taken over by special interests.

Many park advocates may not agree with me, but I am not opposed to a soccer team and stadium in Miami and even some commercial development on some of the Melreese County Club site, however the proposal before you including the premature proposition needs a rewrite that reflects the stated needs of all Miami residents not just soccer fans.

You should consider what you have heard and discussed to date but you must first follow what Miami residents, yes Miami residents have expressed over three decades in the Comp Plan and the Parks Master Plan.

Between these two plans you have invested about four million dollars over the last decade alone. The proposal before you needs a substantially revised goal or outcome or you should start over.

The current Parks Master Plan specifies the need for 25 new neighborhood parks in order to meet the goal of having a park within a half mile walk of all residents. More recently Miami has added another goal of linking our parks with green walkways as a way of further mitigating the fact that Miami ranks last of all high density US cities of park space per resident.

I don’t have to remind you that progress on park goals have been extremely limited relative to about 100 million dollars the City has collected in impact fees paid by developers just for parks since about 1996 when park impact fees were raised.

Developers, along with residents should be livid about limited progress!

Mayor Suarez on July 12 spoke about creating a great new centrally located park but he failed to mention almost a total lack of neighborhood parks in four of five Commission districts.

Neighborhood parks, close to everyone are so important because it has been proven that if a child is not allowed to play in nature, by themselves by the age of 12 are not likely to respect or enjoy parks as an adult. I submit that is why there are so few protectors of parks in Miami. So many Miami children and adults have no parks near them to protect!

But Commissioners, you must respect our lack of parks and work to fulfill the goals of the Parks Master Plan.

As it appears most of you agree the golf course now designated as park land can be compromised in favor of a stadium and some commercial development. You have two choices:

One. If you want to provide for soccer on the subject property, hold public forums and in those forums make people aware of the park needs of Miami as already expressed in the Parks Master Plan as well as other relevant quality of life needs. Talk about not just the needs for park land but also funds for improvements, ongoing maintenance and programing. Then develop a RFP and take one or more propositions to the voters.

Two. Since you have rejected the proper RFP process then PLEASE at least incorporate what you have learned thus far plus the following before sending this to the voters:

1) Ignore the large central park idea because the noise from expressways and jets is not conducive to a pleasant peaceful green experience. The immediate neighborhood may go to such a park for a walk or to use a play field, however, it is foolish to think people will come on a regular basis from any distance to have a great green experience. Yes, they may come for an outdoor entertainment experience or pre and after game revelry. Do not waste space, remediation or money on a green central park!
2) In place of green lawns, require a large permeable space that could be used for parking and large loud outdoor music festivals getting those events out of downtown Miami. Any stage should face west to reduce sound going east.
3) Retain half or more of the golf course with driving range as people do go there for a specific purpose and for them noise is evidently not a concern.
4) Negotiate to build a stadium and a certain number of soccer fields.
5) Require that the parking needed beyond the permeable multipurpose area in one above, take advantage of parking off site with bus shuttle service as is done in many cities. Look at Sydney Australia as to how they have very coordinated bus transport for huge events at stadiums. It is very efficient.
6) Maintain the children’s water park.
7) Increase the green buffer on the eastern portion of the property.
8) Allow the options of some live, work, shop and entertainment spaces in a low rise configuration in order to make this financially viable and successful.
9) Require the developer to work with the City to identify, purchase, improve and open twenty five neighborhood parks prior to any Certificate of Occupancy being granted on the development. An acre of developed land for an acre of a new finished park may be a fair exchange. A neighborhood park should contain at least .75 acre of well landscape shaded area plus space needed for play fields or courts and parking if the neighborhood approves of the latter.
10) Require that any proposition on any project states that all incremental tax dollars or rents collected by the City from the improved parts of the development or by leasing the permeable green space be dedicated to maintaining all of Miami parks and park programs in addition to existing property taxes allocated to parks.
11) Require that any proposition on any project states that the County will deed Parcel B back to the City and that it be forever protected with a park designation to be forever protected from development, allowing no votes.
12) Require that any proposition on any project states Miami will rezone all parks from Civic Space to Park zoning, with all Miami parks being protected forever, never to be considered for rezoning allowing no votes.
13) Place primary focus on creating neighborhood parks in the four districts of the city which lack parks and secondary assistance on the river walk which is limited in residents it serves.
14) Keep in mind that city wide property tax dollars have paid for our parks, 80% of which lie in waterfront district two. It is time the other districts get their needed parks.
15) Create a policy that no city park should be used for commercial activity more than seven days a year and that all funds collected go to parks in addition to regular funding.
16) Unless impact fees for parks are waived on the project, assuming 500 million in contruction, there would be enough to pay for 25 new neighborhood parks.
Some speakers at the July 12 meeting spoke about creating a legacy. I would hope you all take this seriously but for the right reasons. Create legacy well landscaped green neighborhood parks protected forever from development, not just open green space.
Sixty years ago Miami leaders gave us the beginnings of waterfront Bicentennial Park, land where the AA Arena and two museums now cover over a third of it. This covered over park land on our waterfront has not yet been replaced due to deliberate ill-conceived propositions cooked up in back rooms. You must do better!
There is a real legacy opportunity to be achieved here but you are far from it. Don’t settle for just ramming this thru to the voters. Create a great plan and have voters city wide love it for what it achieves city wide for all residents, not just on this parcel of park land. Fully follow your Parks Master Plan!
Steve Hagen 305 754 0099

Miami Hurricane
3 years ago

Gross Proceeds = same vague terminology that Jeff Loris used to screw Miami over when he sold the Marlins. They need to use the top like number for total fiscal consideration. If lawyers mess this up again or bend over, I will have lost all hope in humanity.

Miami Hurricane
3 years ago

Jeff Loria (even Siri hates the guy)

Anonymous
3 years ago

Beckham , this swamp doesn’t deserve you. You can do better!!San Antonio would be perfect!

Anonymous
3 years ago

Saying Miami doesn’t deserve David Beckham, who for the first time is trying his hand at owning a soccer team and building a stadium, is like saying NYC is undeserving of a guy who once owned a McDonald franchise and is now looking to a build fifty story skyscraper on public land.

Put your pompoms away dude.

Anonymous
3 years ago

Maybe Beckman needs to realize Miami has been fucked many many times by the Mas family.