They will fight eternally: Royal Caribbean vs. Beckham

Miami’s Downtown Bay Forum held a public debate yesterday on David Beckham’s proposed MLS stadium at PortMiami, and while the main combatants continue to be Beckham vs. Royal Caribbean cruise lines, there’s a growing list of elected officials opposed to the site as well:

The group who opposes a Major League Soccer stadium at PortMiami announced Wednesday, they have now produced a petition signed by 11 mayors  who oppose a port stadium.

Among them are leaders of Miami Beach, Homestead, Pinecrest, South Miami, Coral Gables and Cutler Bay Mayor Ed MacDougall.

“I think it’s more about taxpayer’s property that needs to be put to a better use, left to cargo and jobs,” said MacDougall.

Of course, none of these people are mayor of Miami, where the stadium would actually go. And you have to imagine that they probably showed up because they were asked to by Royal Caribbean. But still, it qualifies as growing opposition to the site. (Nobody seems opposed to an MLS stadium in general.)

Meanwhile, Royal Caribbean lobbyist John Fox alleged that other cruise lines aren’t taking a stadium on the PortMiami proposal only because they’re seeking their own subsidies from the city:

Carnival’s owner, Micky Arison, also owns the Miami Heat, which is trying to extend its county lease for AmericanAirlines Arena. Norwegian’s top shareholder is Genting Hong Kong, part of the Malaysian-based conglomerate that includes Resorts World Miami, which runs a gambling ship out of PortMiami and hopes to build a casino resort at the site of the old Miami Herald building.

Royal Caribbean, meanwhile, has a lease that lets it pay less than half of market rate for its port property. But, you know, are anyone’s hands truly clean?


One comment on “They will fight eternally: Royal Caribbean vs. Beckham

  1. Not only did Royal come off looking dirty but they got so upset that they argued that the stadium should be located outside of downtown Miami.

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