It looks like David Beckham’s MLS stadium plan, wherever the hell it ends up, will be subject to the approval of Miami voters:
Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado said the city will require a referendum if Beckham’s group settles on filling and then building on a city-owned deep-water basin, known as the Florida East Coast Railway slip, along Biscayne Boulevard.
And, in a new wrinkle, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez said Wednesday that the county could also seek voter approval if Miami Beckham United asks to build on PortMiami’s southwest corner — even though a referendum would not be required for the county-owned property…
“The ultimate decision to build a stadium in downtown Miami should rest with voters,” John Alschuler, Beckham’s real-estate adviser, said in a statement. “If Miami Beckham United selects the FEC slip as the preferred stadium site, we will seek and fully support a voter referendum.”
Democracy! That’s good!
A voter referendum could take place as early as August, though November is a more likely possibility. One hopes that the run-up to the election will involve a serious discussion of the pros and cons of a soccer stadium on the Miami waterfront, and not just one side shouting “The Marlins deal sucked!” and the other “Soccer is a beautiful thing and will rain jobs from the sky!” — ah, forget it, we all know what’s going to happen. Maybe we can at least hope, though, that the debates end up being between Wild-Eyed Religious Guy Who Dressed In The Dark, Snuffy Smith, Tim McCarver, and Young Dan Aykroyd, like this one.