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Major League Soccer stadium site taken off Miami commission agenda

Beckham, team haven't secured privately-owned land in search for stadium

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MIAMI – Soccer star David Beckham's quest to get a Major League Soccer team to Miami has hit another roadblock.

Beckham and his team have been looking to build a stadium next to Marlins Park, but they have been unable so far to acquire the privately-owned land on the site.

Miami Commissioner Francis Suarez confirmed to Local 10 News that the team was "moving in a different direction," and an item concerning the site will be taken off the Dec. 10 meeting agenda.

"It's going to be withdrawn from the next agenda because the Beckham group has not acquired the private properties that are needed to construct the stadium on that site," Suarez said Monday.

The goal was to have a referendum on the March ballot for use of that land, requiring approval from city commissioners.

A day care is on that parcel of land, along with five other properties. The day care owner wanted $30 million for the land.

"The residents expect us to hold these teams to the fire," Suarez said. "A lot of times they're financed by wealthy people and they want some sort of a public subsidy, which is very controversial as well, which is why we were going to take it to referendum."

Beckham United has scouted multiple sites in Miami-Dade County since announcing plans to bring Major League Soccer to South Florida, but all of the locations have failed to materialize.

"While Miami Beckham United is still hopeful we can secure the necessary private properties adjacent to the Marlins Park site, we are faced with the fact that some owners are not interested in selling or are seeking completely unreasonable prices," a Miami Beckham United representative said. "Fortunately, we have been receiving interest from a number of private land owners with sites across Miami-Dade County and we are now in the process of evaluating those alternatives. David, Marcelo, Simon and Tim appreciate the strong support of our fans and we are doing everything in our power to make our dream of an MLS club in Miami a reality."

Suarez said he didn't know the locations of the proposed sites.

"I'm hopeful that it is in the city of Miami because I know that our citizens desire to have a professional soccer team here in Miami," Suarez said.

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