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Football team Inter Miami CF reportedly struck a deal to create a public park around its $160m (£116m) stadium in Fort Lauderdale. Now the city’s vice mayor has accused the club, which is part-owned by David Beckham, of reneging on its promise.
Inter Miami play at the 18,000-seater DRV PNK Stadium, which is owned by the city of Miami.
A 2019 deal between the city and Miami Beckham United required the club to build the park “in the most expeditious manner”.
The deal with the owners of the club called Inter Miami also allowed them to have a 50-year rent-free lease at the Florida stadium.
The plans were for the park to be built on the 20-acre site next to the ground.
This was supposed to feature running and walking trails, a playground, a dog park and sports fields for public use.
However, two years on, the deputy mayor has said no building work has started on the site.
Instead, it is claimed to be mainly used as a car park on match days.
This also means the grounds are fenced off so cannot be used by taxpayers currently.
City vice-mayor Heather Moraitis said: “It seems like an empty promise.
“I’m not even sure David Beckham knows what’s going on…
“My city feels let down,” she added to the Guardian.
“I don’t think he’d support turning his back on a whole community.
“He’s a dream maker, not a dream killer. I believe he wouldn’t want to come into a community and renege on a promise.
“Taxpayers spent millions on this and got nothing in return.”
The club has until July 2022 to finish the public facilities, as per the agreement.
David owns the team with Marcelo Claure, Jorge and Jose Mas and Masayoshi Son.
The agreement stated they were to manage and pay for the costs of construction.
Heather continued: “It was a win-win for both of us. The community was still getting a beautiful 20-acre community park with fields and playgrounds and trails.
“They even hired a local landscaping architect who worked on their whole facility.”
However, she claims the club stalled for two years and then asked for more land.
Miami Beckham United’s legal representatives have not responded to requests for comment.
However, club lobbyist Stephanie Toothaker told The Mirror how David and his partners are not “ducking any promises”.
Express.co.uk has contacted David’s and Miami Beckham United’ reps for comment.
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