MIAMI (AP) — David Beckham’s long-planned soccer stadium deal is closer to reality.
Miami voters gave city officials permission Tuesday to negotiate a no-bid lease deal with Beckham’s group, which wants to build a Major League Soccer complex on what has been a public golf course. Beckham’s group is also planning to have technology offices, a hotel and retail space on the land, in return for guaranteeing the city about $3.6 million in rent annually.
It’s not a done deal: Now the retired soccer star and his partners must negotiate the terms with city officials for the 25,000-seat stadium and transforming the rest of what is now the Melreese Country Club into a 58-acre (23-hectare) public park.
Tuesday’s win was the first big one for Beckham’s club, officially named Club Internacional de Futbol Miami — or Inter Miami. Beckham has considered and wanted several other sites over the years, before turning his attention to Melreese in recent months.
“I started this dream five and a half years ago … to bring a team to Miami, to bring a team…