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Miami-Dade okays Marlins Stadium project funding


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Miami-Dade OK's downtown mega deal

Posted on Tue, Dec. 18, 2007

By MATTHEW I. PINZUR AND CHARLES RABIN

mpinzur@MiamiHerald.com

Less than a week after most of them heard about it, Miami-Dade commissioners on Tuesday approved a multibillion-dollar deal to build a baseball stadium, downtown streetcar, museum campus and an underwater tunnel to the Port of Miami.

''You have to have foresight and you have to have guts to stand in front of these issues,'' said Commissioner José ''Pepe'' Diaz, who delivered a passionate speech about the need for the projects in the face of a movement to delay action. ``We don't have a GM plant here, we don't have a McDonnell Douglas plant -- we depend on tourism and trade.''

The 9-4 vote allows the county and Miami governments to set aside new property-tax revenue from a pair of downtown neighborhoods through 2030, reserving it for specific projects instead of dropping it into the general budget.

The so-called ''global agreement'' germinated for years in closed-door meetings of top government leaders but only became public last Wednesday -- the day before Miami city commissioners voted 4-1 to approve their side.

Many details remain unsettled, but the county's approval was considered the largest remaining hurdle to a plan that will help define downtown Miami's structure and soul through the next generation.

The vote came after labor unions asked for guarantees that local workers and contractors would win some of the work, and homeless advocates asked for guarantees of new affordable housing.

Specifically, the deal expanded the size and life span of Community Redevelopment Agencies -- quasi-governmental groups created to revitalize slums and blight -- in the Overtown/Park West and Omni neighborhoods.

That expansion allowed the county and city to plan long-term spending of some $3 billion. Most of it will come from the Omni CRA, including $484 million to pay off debt at the new Carnival Center for the Performing Arts, $88 million for the city's contribution to the $1 billion port tunnel and $130 million to renovate Bicentennial Park, where voters in 2004 approved a plan to build two museums.

The two governments would spend $370 million on the baseball stadium -- plus $155 million from the Florida Marlins -- by dipping into tourism taxes that can only be used on sports and convention facilities.

Marlins President David Samson attended much of the day-long meeting but did not address the commission.

Another $50 million will go toward a new soccer stadium next to the ballpark on the site where the Orange Bowl now stands. That money, also approved in the 2004 Building Better Communities plan, was originally earmarked for Orange Bowl renovations.

Finally, the deal adds a projected $605 million to revitalize Overtown and Park West, likely targeted at affordable housing, infrastructure and job creation. An additional $326 million will go to the city's general budget and $196 million to the county -- but $20 million will come out of the county's share to fund a controversial streetcar project for downtown.

Many of the projects -- including the stadium and streetcar -- need additional approval from the two commissions. Some of those votes could happen later Tuesday, some not for years.

The County Commission's vote for the global agreement was widely expected despite calls from some activists -- and a few commissioners -- to slow down and allow more public input.

Some projects had short fuses that made a delay until January unappetizing: The private contractors building the tunnel had already waited months longer than legally required for local governments to commit their $452 million share, leaving the project in jeopardy of collapse from further delays.

The baseball team, whose president has suggested he will rebrand the club as the Miami Marlins, needs to start building a new home soon in order to be out of Dolphins Stadium when the current lease expires after the 2009 season.

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/breaking_n...ory/349542.html

An AMAZING day.

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The Marlins live! Hooray for the rest of the NL East! :P

Seriously though, this is great for them. It'll be worlds better than playing in the baseball cavern that is Dolphins Stadium. Good for the Marlins.

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Just for clarification, but is this the Orange Bowl site or somewhere downtown Miami?

from the article:

Another $50 million will go toward a new soccer stadium next to the ballpark on the site where the Orange Bowl now stands. That money, also approved in the 2004 Building Better Communities plan, was originally earmarked for Orange Bowl renovations.

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They are planning on building this on the old Orange Bowl site. If the Marlins thought that they weren't getting anyone to come to games at Dolphin Stadium, wait until they move another half-hour south. Combine that with it being smack in the middle of a relatively rough neighborhood, and the lack of parking, and we have ourselves a winner. At least the rest of us here in South Florida, but outside of Miami-Dade County, no longer will have to pay for it. I don't want to pay a penny for this joke of a team so they can play in front of 1,000 people in a brand new ballpark and allow their loser owner to pocket tens of millions through revenue sharing and expanded suite/concession revenue. It's a shame MLB didn't just say the heck with it and let them move to San Antonio/Charlotte/Hampton Roads/Las Vegas/etc.

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So despite waiting several years to approve everything, now instead of just a baseball stadium they're building a baseball stadium and a soccer stadium? On the Orange Bowl site?

Wow.

It's great for the Marlins obviously, but it sounds like the municipalities involved would've been better off financially by just making a deal 5 years ago.

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They are planning on building this on the old Orange Bowl site. If the Marlins thought that they weren't getting anyone to come to games at Dolphin Stadium, wait until they move another half-hour south. Combine that with it being smack in the middle of a relatively rough neighborhood, and the lack of parking, and we have ourselves a winner. At least the rest of us here in South Florida, but outside of Miami-Dade County, no longer will have to pay for it. I don't want to pay a penny for this joke of a team so they can play in front of 1,000 people in a brand new ballpark and allow their loser owner to pocket tens of millions through revenue sharing and expanded suite/concession revenue. It's a shame MLB didn't just say the heck with it and let them move to San Antonio/Charlotte/Hampton Roads/Las Vegas/etc.

All the studies indicate moving the team to the urban core near downtown Miami would put more money in their pockets. The site will have 15,000 parking space which is plenty for baseball. The city plans to make the Sports Complex the center of an urban renewal project.

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I didn't read the whole article but does this mean they aren't going to be called the, "Miami Marlins"?
Miami-Dade OK's downtown mega deal

Posted on Tue, Dec. 18, 2007

By MATTHEW I. PINZUR AND CHARLES RABIN

mpinzur@MiamiHerald.com

The baseball team, whose president has suggested he will rebrand the club as the Miami Marlins, needs to start building a new home soon in order to be out of Dolphins Stadium when the current lease expires after the 2009 season.

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Actually, I'm more intrigued by the underwater tunnel...

Google "Port Authority of Allegheny County underwater tunnel" to see how that might run.

Or, vist www.portauthority.org and search around for the underwater "T" tunnel. It'll give you some ideas.

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Actually, I'm more intrigued by the underwater tunnel...

Google "Port Authority of Allegheny County underwater tunnel" to see how that might run.

Or, vist www.portauthority.org and search around for the underwater "T" tunnel. It'll give you some ideas.

C'mon, you can't compare... Florida has immigrants who actually do :censored:, versus Pennsylvania's immigrant descendants who bitch about :censored:.

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Actually, I'm more intrigued by the underwater tunnel...

Google "Port Authority of Allegheny County underwater tunnel" to see how that might run.

Or, vist www.portauthority.org and search around for the underwater "T" tunnel. It'll give you some ideas.

C'mon, you can't compare... Florida has immigrants who actually do :censored:, versus Pennsylvania's immigrant descendants who bitch about :censored:.

...And as a native Floridian and current transient resident of *GULP* Pennsylvania...I couldn't agree MORE!!!

(Although I will say that a few of those immigrants have found their way up here and are currently bustin' arse.)

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They are planning on building this on the old Orange Bowl site. If the Marlins thought that they weren't getting anyone to come to games at Dolphin Stadium, wait until they move another half-hour south. Combine that with it being smack in the middle of a relatively rough neighborhood, and the lack of parking, and we have ourselves a winner. At least the rest of us here in South Florida, but outside of Miami-Dade County, no longer will have to pay for it. I don't want to pay a penny for this joke of a team so they can play in front of 1,000 people in a brand new ballpark and allow their loser owner to pocket tens of millions through revenue sharing and expanded suite/concession revenue. It's a shame MLB didn't just say the heck with it and let them move to San Antonio/Charlotte/Hampton Roads/Las Vegas/etc.

All the studies indicate moving the team to the urban core near downtown Miami would put more money in their pockets. The site will have 15,000 parking space which is plenty for baseball. The city plans to make the Sports Complex the center of an urban renewal project.

A while back I recall them talking about putting it near or on the site of the old Miami Arena. Is this still where they are looking to put the stadium or is this site out?

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It's great news for the Marlins, but personally, I hope it's a smaller ballpark that sits around 35,000, which'll make it seem more homey. But let me understand this...there adding a $50 million to build a soccer stadium for a city which no loner has a soccer team? They're just a little too late.

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It's great news for the Marlins, but personally, I hope it's a smaller ballpark that sits around 35,000, which'll make it seem more homey. But let me understand this...there adding a $50 million to build a soccer stadium for a city which no loner has a soccer team? They're just a little too late.

Trying to get one back, perhaps? Miami has been mentioned as a dark-horse candidate for the next round of MLS expansion (after Seattle).

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