Downtown Miami stadium looks doubtful
A covered baseball stadium in downtown Miami that has drawn opposition from the shipping community because of port access concerns is looking less likely, after the Miami City Commission voted Thursday to provide a city funding share — but removed language about the downtown site.
Miami-Dade county commissioners had previously endorsed a stadium funding package and recommended the downtown location. But Pete Hernandez, City of Miami city manager, told the city commissioners other sites may be better, specifically mentioning the possibility of a new stadium at the current site of the Orange Bowl.
University of Miami officials were also quoted in Wednesday's Miami Herald as saying they are considering the advantages of moving University of Miami football games to Dolphins Stadium, noting the financial advantages if the university reached an agreement to allow a domed baseball stadium to be built at the Orange bowl site.
With the city vote to approve funding for the stadium, even without a location, city officials noted the funding agreement for a stadium came move forward to the state level.
After approved financing from the Marlins, the county and the city, the stadium proposal is still $30 million short of expected costs. The final piece of the stadium proposal would be a state-approved tax break. The legislature is expected to consider that proposal during the current session, which started Tuesday.
Shipping industry leaders say they like the Marlins, but hope they get a stadium away from the downtown site, which is just blocks from the entrance to the Port of Miami. They say the port already has access problems, and a downtown stadium would only increase congestion.