Jorge Perez: Beckham’s ‘Ridiculous’ Stadium Proposal Is Even Worse Than The Marlins Deal

Related Group founder Jorge Perez is not a fan of a proposal by David Beckham and Jorge Mas to develop Melreese Park

Writing from the “Mountains of Italy,” Perez sent a strongly worded email to Miami commissioners over the weekend, in which he criticized the deal. The email was obtained by Glenna Milberg.

The “Melreese Giveway” is so bad that it would make the Marlins Stadium deal look good for the city and county, he wrote.

Perez called the financial terms “ridiculous,” and asked why it was being rushed through without a proper appraisal and community input. Beckham’s lobbyists are pushing commissioners to approve a referendum calling for a minimum of just $3.5 million in rent.

Team owners and developers would profit handsomely, he warned, while the stadium would end up being built at the public’s expense.

Perez said that only the stadium should be built if anything, with the remainder of the park kept as open space.

The email in full:

Mr commissioner, I am in Italy but I sent you an email that I think did not go through. It was just to express my dismay at “the Melreese giveaway”. I am pro soccer and like the Mas family very much. But, as Jorge himself states, this is a billion dollar deal: and City gets $3.5MM in rent??? This will Make Marlin Stadium like a good deal for the City/County. Why does the City not take its time and hire a professional appraiser to determine value. If I was developing a billion dollar deal, the land portion would be approximately 20% or $200,000,000. At a 6% return, rent would be $12,000,000. While I am oppose to giving public land away for private, for profit purposes without any social benefit,if AFTER COMMUNITY INPUT, the City desired to sell or lease public open space to private individuals, they should conduct an appraisal and determine what is fair market value. It is bad enough turning the Little open space we have left for the gain of a few wealthy individuals, but to give it away for a ridiculous sum is unconscionable. Remember, if this goes through? The end result is not only that the stadium will be built for free at the expense of our citizens but that, in addition, the team owners/developed will profit handsomely. Is there a reason why, before going to a referendum, the City does not take the required time to solicit both professional(value and planning)and community input??? Let’s help build a soccer team, but take your time and do it correctly. And, make it just what is necessary for a soccer stadium and keep the rest as community open space. Thanks for listening(would have called but I have spotty communications in mountains of Italy). All the best, jorge Perez

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Anonymous
2 years ago

Well he has been vocal lately. Wish he speak out against Mana for being a slumlord.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Everything Mana owns was put up for sell and Jorge Perez had the chance to buy them, so Perez can’t complain about what Mana is doing with that property which he could’ve owned himself.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Just because Perez didn’t choose to buy any of the choice downtown offerings doesn’t mean that Mana is still a slumlord!

Anonymous
2 years ago

I didn’t say Mana isn’t this or that. People like you want Jorge Perez to “speak out against Mana for being a slumlord.” I’m only stating a fact. Those lots and buildings Mana purchased in Miami were up for sell and very rich developers like Jorge Perez had a chance to buy them just like Mana did. If Jorge Perez decided to now be so concerned about what Mana is or isn’t doing with his property, don’t you think that that would be just a little gratuitous of him?

Miami1
2 years ago

I agree with him, but also he is probably mad he didn’t think of this too..jaja

Anonymous
2 years ago

Who would trust what Jorge Perez has to say? He is in business for Related.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Well, which of his points do you disagree with? He made a number of them.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Looks like we have a Jorge brown-noser. Tell us Mr/Ms Anonymous, what did he have for dinner last night?

Anonymous
2 years ago

“Perez said that only the stadium should be built, with the remainder of the park kept as open space.” Right, like his museum and the oh-so-successful park fronting it!

marc
2 years ago

It’s not his, he only donated for naming rights. His donation was garbage to begin with, should never been called Perez Art Museum Miami

Anonymous
2 years ago

How about the “park” on the land in front of the water at the Paraiso District, half of which was taken up by the Amara “private beach club”.

Anonymous
2 years ago

it’s not worse…. at all.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Why don’t they share the Stadium with the Marlins as NYCFC is doing it with the Yankees until they figure something reasonable out?

Anonymous
2 years ago

And in Chicago at Soldier Field as well. But its just pure greed. They don’t want to share revenue!

Anonymous
2 years ago

I agree….. and they keep it busy all the year

Anonymous
2 years ago

Why is this news? Who cares what Perez thinks? Is he going to fight this tooth and nail like he is planning to do against gambling? Last time I checked Related is not building anything by the airport. How about mind your own business Jorge. All of this hot air from someone who was caught saying that he wants to keep building in Downtown and really doesn’t care that Miami might end up under water by 2050 because he will be dead by then anyway. It is obvious you don’t care about Miami, so again mind your own business.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Instead of attacking Perez why don’t you say which of his points you disagree with?

Anonymous
2 years ago

Ok, all of them! Happy?

Tu madre
2 years ago

Nobody asked for his input.. hes jealous hes not apart of this project.. jorge Perez you hater..

Anonymous
2 years ago

can anybody explain to me why the stadium would be built for free if they decide to charge him 3.5 million in rent?. they heard the opinions of many neighbors and they have n’t done any deal with beckham that’s why they postponed voting on the stadium deal. rent should be charged according to demand to rent this place. as far as i know nobody was interested in renting this land

Anonymous
2 years ago

Yes. Perez made the point that the obscenely low valuation on the lease price provides such savings below market rent that the stadium get built for free.

Anonymous
2 years ago

I’m sure there are loads of hotels and office space developers that would love a shot at a $1/sqft lease of land next to the airport. Thats 200x lower than the city average and I would guess the demand to build there would be about as high as in Blue Lagoon.

Anonymous
2 years ago

135 acres. Perez thinks there should be a soccer stadium (which can NOT support itself financially) and then leave the other 126 open???
Nonsense. Let the developers develop…but true, the developers should be paying millions more in rent.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
2 years ago

PSSSH….He’s just mad they ain’t naming the team and stadium after him….gurl please…

Steve Hagen
2 years ago

I will try to post a document but it may be too long.

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

Anonymous
2 years ago

From his email, I gather that Jorge is in the mountains of Italy…and he is drunk and bored.