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Stadium News

We haven't talked about the possibility of a new baseball only stadium in South Florida for a while.  Might as well do it now.

The Hialeah site isn't that much further along than it was in late April.  The UDB did pass to allow development and the county commissioners did approve the zoning changes in order to satisfy the DCA's concerns.  But after that, which was substantial, there still isn't enough land on the table to do the deal.

Miami-Dade County officials are continuing to focus on an area west of I-75 and east of Florida's Turnpike in Hialeah for a ballpark for the Marlins and are seeking ways to obtain property for parking for the stadium, according to County Manager George Burgess.

In a memo sent to county commmissioners Tuesday, Burgess said the city of Hialeah has committed 30 acres to the project, but another 40 to 50 acres is needed to provide sufficient parking.

Then there is the issue of the tax revenue from the possible new development.

Burgess said the county is also reviewing the costs of the project, estimated at $430 million, with the Marlins. Burgess said he believes capturing the property taxes from new development proposed in the area can help offset the cost of the project.

When last addressed the county had not pledged the money from the property taxes to the stadium site.  The city of Hialeah was looking to retain their half of the revenue.  Best I can tell, nothing has changed.  It is not clear, at this point, the intentions of the two entities.  Assuming all would dedicate the revenues to the construction of the stadium, no one is sure how much money that would be.

If agreements can be reached, concerning all of the above, I wouldn't expect it until sometime in 2007 and that may be at the earliest.

I hope I didn't write this where it sounds bleak. The point is: there are still some hurdles to clear.  The good news is that the local politicians are still actively engaged in the process and that is absolutely necessary for the deal to be completed.