Milestone reached on construction site in northern Fort Lauderdale.
MIAMI, Fla. (November 6, 2019) —
Progress continues to be made on the Inter Miami Complex (we’ll call it the “Centro Deportivo”) in Fort Lauderdale, which includes a new stadium, the club’s training complex and Inter Miami CF Academy home.
Last Friday, November 1, the team of on-site construction personnel completed the installation of the first roof structure for the stadium. This milestone comes just weeks after the stadium “went vertical” with steel columns, followed by the installation of componentes of the secondary frame of the metal building as well as the horizontal structural members designed to provide lateral support for wall panels.
The yet-to-be-named, 18,000-capacity stadium (referred to simply as “Fort Lauderdale Stadium” in the interim) will serve as the temporary home of Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami for its first two MLS seasons, 2020 and 2021, before the club moves into its home stadium at Miami Freedom Park in Miami.
Fort Lauderdale Stadium is being constructed on the site of the former Lockhart Stadium. It will continue to house Inter Miami’s USL League One team once the first team moves into its Miami home.
Another key moment will be reached in mid-November, when the grass at Fort Lauderdale Stadium and for the training fields is expected to be installed.
Other portions of the 46-acre Centro Deportivo are also progressing. The Training Complex – where Inter Miami’s MLS, USL, and Academy teams will permanently train – is also taking shape. The 50,000-square-foot (4,645 sq. m) building continues to undergo steel, concrete, and roofing installations.
The stadium and training complex at the Centro Deportivo will be ready in time for the beginning of the 2020 season. Here are a couple of preview images released by Inter Miami:
More than 200 people are working as part of the Lockhart Construction Team, including Manica Architecture, Perez & Perez Architects Planners, Bliss & Nitray, Inc. Structural Engineers, SDM Consulting Engineers, Flynn Engineering Services and EDSA, Inc. They will continue their work to deliver this project ahead of Inter Miami’s inaugural season debut in March 2020. Inter Miami’s first home game is tentatively scheduled for March 14, 2020, a date which will be confirmed when MLS releases next season’s calendar in a few weeks.
The Generation adidas Cup is one of the premier competitive youth soccer tournaments in North America. Now in its 13th edition, the tournament is contested among teams at the Under-17 and Under-15 age brackets.
Regional qualifying matches began this Columbus Day weekend (October 11-14) at this year’s host site in Chester, Pennsylvania, home of the Philadelphia Union, at the Power Training Complex!
All matches are free and open to the public. and Live streams of all be the games are available on individual teams’ websites (ex: philadelphia union.com)
In the regional qualifying, MLS teams are divided across three different groups (A, B, C). In addition to the games taking place over Columbus Day, qualifying matches in each group will also occur during the 2020 President’s Day weekend in February.
Teams receive three points for a win, two points for a penalty kick win, one point for a loss on penalties, and zero for a straight loss.
The top two teams from each group will advance to play in Division 1 of the 2020 Generation adidas Cup Finals at the Toyota Soccer Center in Frisco, Texas. The third and fourth placed teams from each group will play in Division 2 and the remaining teams will play in Division 3.
The Under-15 age group (players born on or after January, 1, 2005) will again be represented at this year’s finals. 24 U-15 MLS clubs go through Regional Qualifying. The four group winners will advance to the Final Event to compete in an 8-team international challenge.
It is only two months into the Inter Miami CF Academy’s first season, and thus far it has been a fall season that has seen the various youth teams post impressive results. For example, this past weekend, Inter Miami CF Academy teams played nine matches, coming away with wins in eight of those nine, with the other result being a draw.
La Academia teams have already taken part in one international tournament, which also marked the first-ever time a team under the brand of Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami has taken the pitch.
Academy teams have also played in front of Inter Miami CF’s official supporters groups in their first home games in South Florida. The fully-funded youth academy is a member of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.
Learn more about the Academy, its origins, missions, the initial selection process, its focus and more here: The Inter Miami CF Academy
Nine matches were on the slate this past weekend for the Inter Miami CF Academy’s teams. In total, Inter had eight wins and a draw.
The U-19s were also on the road. This time, the club was in Raleigh, NC, to play against North Carolina FC’s Academy side on Saturday, Oct. 5. Federico Tellez scored Inter Miami’s only goal in the 1-1 draw with North Carolina FC.
Meanwhile, the U16/17s played the toughest matches of the weekend. Led by head coach Javier Morales, the Inter squad came out winning by the minimum result of 1-0 over the North Carolina Fusion U16/17s.
A first half goal by Inter Miami’s Oliver Pratt in the 21st minute was the only goal of the match.
On Saturday, Oct. 5, Inter Miami’s U16/17 team won 2-1 against North Carolina FC’s U-17. Goals from Logan Batiste and Alexander Lozano sealed the victory.
The U15s also travelled to Summit, North Carolina, outside of Greensboro, this past weekend for their games.
The Inter U15s faced the North Carolina Fusion U15s. The away side, coached by Abraham Bibas, notched a victory 3-0, earning goalkeeper Javier Barbosa a clean sheet in the process.
Goal Scorers for Inter Miami: Juan Hurtado (9′), Alejandro Vigil (33′) Pedro Faife (55′).
The Inter Miami U-15s also defeated North Carolina FC 2-1. Israel Boatwright and Juan Hurtado were the club’s goal scorers.
The U14s, managed by Philippe-Oliver Cineas, were also playing away to the West Florida Flames. Inter went away with a 4-2 win.
Inter Miami Goal Scorers: Juan Quevedo (5′, 73′), Nyle Waugh (34′, 71′).
The Inter Miami U13s were in action on the road in Brandon, Florida near Tampa, taking on the West Florida Flames. Pedro Cavalcanti’s side devastated the home side in a 14-1 away win.
For the public in Fort Lauderdale, there is much to like about the deal.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (July 10, 2019) —
It was another win in the books for soccer legend David Beckham. On Tuesday night, his group, which operates under the legal entity known as Miami Beckham United, LLC *1 won an agreement from the City of Fort Lauderdale assures the Major League Soccer team will have a new stadium in time for the start of the 2020 season.
City commissioners unanimously embraced plans to transform the defunct Lockhart Stadium, located off Commercial Boulevard and Northwest 12th Avenue, into a professional soccer centre.
City officials said very little Tuesday, and Beckham and his business partners were not present.*2 Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis was very pleased by the result.
“This is a really a wonderful turning point in our community,” Mayor Trantalis said. “Congratulations. We’ll be there for the first kick.”
While Beckham’s ultimate goal is to build his team’s home stadium in Miami, and to use the planned Fort Lauderdale stadium as a training hub for cultivating soccer talent, the immediate problem of finding a suitable place to play in the meantime is solved. For at least the first two seasons, starting next March, Beckham’s new Major League Soccer team, Inter Miami CF, will play in Fort Lauderdale.
The 18,000-seat Fort Lauderdale stadium and the 25,000-seat Miami stadium would be about an hour apart, by car.
For the public in Fort Lauderdale, the transformation will include sports fields, a city park and a home football field for two high schools — Fort Lauderdale and Stranahan — that currently have none.
Already, Lockhart Stadium and the adjacent Fort Lauderdale Stadium have been demolished.
The name of the new sports stadium hasn’t been announced. The agreement approved Tuesday says the group can name any portion of the Inter Miami site, including the stadium, without the city’s consent, “provided such name shall not be in bad taste or offensive to the city’s image, or in the reasonable opinion of the City Commission is a source of embarrassment to the Fort Lauderdale community.”
Commissioner Heather Moraitis said she supports retaining the “Lockhart” name, after former city commissioner H. Y. “Doug” Lockhart. The decision rests on Miami Beckham United, though. Securing a naming rights agreement would be a logical step and one which can bring in revenue that would be used to offset operating costs. While naming rights agreements vary in length and terms, many are between 5 and 7 years in length.
Under the terms of the deal, no money changes hands. In return for use of the property for 50 years, Beckham United will construct sports fields, a trail, playground, and park space on the southern portion of the property, for the community. The agreement expires on December 31, 2069, but Inter Miami can renew the lease agreement for a five-year term. Thereafter, by mutual agreement, the lease can be renewed for two additional five-year terms.
The city intends to use some of its $200 million parks bond, approved by voters in November, to enhance the new city park there.
Other terms of the deal:
FOOD, DRINKS: The Inter Miami group can operate concessions, including any restaurant, sports bar or tavern.
COMMUNITY: At least 24 days a year, local high schools will have access to Inter Miami’s turf field for high school football or soccer events. In addition, four days a year, the city can use Inter Miami’s stadium for football, soccer, JROTC, band concerts or other community events.
SPELLING: The agreement says that “Miami Beckham shall endeavour in good faith not to abbreviate the word ‘Fort’ in city’s name in any written promotional materials.”
MONEY: Miami Beckham United will pay the estimated $60 million to construct all improvements. After that, the group will pay to operate and maintain just the Inter Miami portion, which includes a stadium and a 50,000 square foot training facility with locker rooms, weight rooms, classrooms, and dining facilities.
DEADLINE: All the work is to be completed within three years, but if it’s not, the city’s only recourse is to take over construction of the public portion, and bill it to Miami Beckham United.
And say this for Beckham: He somehow lasted the process. He needed some local muscle like Mas being added. But even if you didn’t follow all the ins and outs, the commission meetings and changed stadium sites, Beckham lasting six years through this fight is as revealing as the finish line drawing near.
“I had no idea,” Beckham said. “I honestly thought I’d announce the team and we’d be up and playing in a year. Not because of who I am. Just because I felt there was such a movement in this country and such a moment in the MLS and this sport that I just assumed it would be pretty easy to start a team.”
*1 – Miami Beckham United, LLC is a Delaware Limited Liability Corporation duly authorised to conduct business in the State of Florida.
*2 – The ownership group consists of Jorge and Jose Mas, chairman and CEO, respectively, of MasTec engineering and construction company; Marcelo Claure, co-founder of Brightstar Corp. and chief operating officer for SoftBank, which owns Sprint, and billionaire businessman Masayoshi Son, founder and executive chairman of SoftBank.
“Demolition Day” paid tribute to the past while remaining squarely focused on the future of “fútbol” in South Florida.
Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (Wednesday May 8, 2019)
A South Florida morning at its finest – bright, sunny skies, light breezes and warm temperatures – provided the perfect backdrop to an official ceremony by Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami to mark the beginning of the transformation of Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale. The site will be the permanent home of the Inter Academy, the club Training Centre, and home of its USL affiliated club. A new 18,000 seat stadium will be built as part of a park with a soccer focus. In addition to being home for the yet-to-be-named USL club, the stadium will be the temporary home for Inter Miami CF during its first two seasons in Major League Soccer, before moving to Miami Freedom Park once it is ready.
Television personality and fútbol commentator Fernando Fiore was the host of the ceremony and was his vibrant and humorous self. He recalled his many visits to Lockhart Stadium over the years, and called it a “pleasure” to return. He pulled out his ticket to the inaugural Miami Fusion game from Sunday, March 15, 1998 – Section 3, Row 15, Seat 98. “Please Jorge, make sure I have a seat by that one when we open the new one,” he joked.
Supporters of the new club were also very visible, with all three of the official Inter Miami Supporters Groups on hand: Vice City 1896, Southern Legion and The Siege. They sang, waved flags, banged drums, and set off the ubiquitous Inter Miami pink smoke into the air, announcing their presence and laying claim to the site.
Inter Miami CF Managing Owner Jorge Mas was one of the speakers at the event. Charismatic as always, he wanted to stress what the project stands for:
I had the chance to ask Ray Hudson, a legend of soccer here, who played for the original Ft. Lauderdale Strikers and later managed the MLS Miami Fusion, as well as enjoying success as an announcer for BeIn Sports. He told me he’s on board and called it a sign of progress. He also added to TV reporters:
Among politicians on hand was Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis. During his speech addressing the attendees, he said: “This is truly a historic day for the city of Fort Lauderdale as we come together to kick off a visionary project that will completely transform the 64-acre site and have a lasting impact on our community for generations to come,” Trantalis added: “Our partnership with Miami Beckham United and Inter Miami CF represents a new and exciting chapter in the history of this storied property. One that will bring $60 million in upgrades and improvements including a new professional soccer stadium, training facilities, team offices, a youth soccer academy, multi-purpose community athletic fields, and a major public park.”
Looking Ahead: Images of the new Lockhart Park (courtesy of Inter Miami CF and Manika)
Season Ticket Deposit Campaign Begins
Yesterday also saw the opening day for fans to begin placing deposits on season tickets for the inaugural season in 2020. Links are available on Inter Miami social media channels, or online at www.InterMiamiCF.com. Fans can also affiliate with a supporters group, thereby gaining the ability to receive a special rate on season ticket deposits in the supporters section of the stadium as well as other benefits. More details are available on each of the social media accounts of the supporters groups.