Beckham Wants To Bulldoze Melreese Park For Soccer Stadium (Updated)

Miami’s largest park (and one of the few remaining green spaces in the area) could soon be paved over for a soccer complex.

David Beckham and his partner Jorge Mas are set to unveil plans to bulldoze green space at the publicly-owned International Links Melreese Country Club, in order to build an Arquitectonica-designed stadium, according to the Herald.

The proposal is likely to be revealed at a Miami commission meeting on July 12.

The 180-acre city-owned park is the only municipal golf course in all of Miami, and was built in 1961. It sits next to Miami International Airport, and was suggested as a stadium site by new Miami City Manager (and former MIA director) Emilio Gonzalez.

To sell the plan, Mas and Beckham will reveal Arquitectonica renderings of a “soccer village & tech hub,” according to a tweet from Mas. It will also likely include restaurants, retail, a soccer academy and redesign of remaining park space.

Why the switch from Overtown, where Beckham spent years acquiring land and developing plans for a stadium? Miami resident Mas, who only recently joined Beckham as a partner, is said to be concerned about the “neighborhood experience” in Overtown.

A referendum is required to build on the taxpayer-owned park land, with the Beckham group likely pushing for a Miami commission vote in July. It could then be sent to Miami voters in November.

Update: Mas told the Herald that he wants to build the complex on 70 acres of the park. Just 90 acres would remain as parkland, including an existing water park and baseball facility.

A hotel and convention space will be included in the project.