The Real Deal Miami

Beckham courting All Aboard Florida investor to help fund Miami soccer stadium

Beckham is closest he's ever been to building soccer stadium in Miami
June 20, 2016 03:00PM

A conceptual rendering of the MLS Miami stadium

A conceptual rendering of the MLS Miami stadium

After talks fell through with a potential Qatari investor, David Beckham’s development team is reportedly courting a railroad honcho to help fund its $175 million Miami soccer stadium.

Miami Beckham United has entered talks with Wesley Edens, co-chairman of the Fortress Investment Group that’s backing All Aboard Florida’s Miami-to-Orlando commuter service called Brightline, according to the Miami Herald.

The talks haven’t yielded a deal so far, according to the Herald, though sources cited by the newspaper said Beckham’s negotiations were only with Edens and not his company, Fortress.

Besides his executive position at Fortress, Edens is also co-owner of the Milwaukee Bucks NBA team.

A deal with Edens could prove fruitful for Beckham’s team: besides any outright funding, a partnership with All Aboard Florida would give the stadium access to a nearby parking garage, solving the stadium’s controversial lack of parking, according to the Herald. The Brightline commuter train also runs between Miami and Orlando, the nearest city with a Major League Soccer franchise.

Beckham’s team began its quest to build an MLS stadium in Miami three years ago and has since been mired by difficulties, most of which came from trying to identify development sites for the 25,000-seat arena.

The retired soccer star’s plans came as close as they’ve ever been to fruition earlier this year when his team paid nearly $19 million for six acres of land in Overtown, marking the first time they have actually closed on a development site.

The team still needs to close on an additional three acres owned by Miami-Dade County, though that deal has blown past its expected March closing date. [Miami Herald] — Sean Stewart-Muniz