According to The Miami Herald, the site where new Inter Miami stadium is to be built is highly contaminated. Soil analysis shows that arsenic levels may be even as high as twice the acceptable limit.
Miami Freedom Park Stadium is planned to be a modern sports complex built at the site of former Melreese golf course, near the Miami International Airport. It is to be founded by a group of investors including famous footballer David Beckham. In April, when the project was released, it immediately got a lot of attention, among other things for the unique design remaining huge pink flamingo wings.
As it now turns out, the sports complex construction may not be totally trouble-free. The ground with the golf course has been recently analyzed for contamination levels.
The environmental company EE&G hired by the club officials delivered a 193-page document with the analysis results. It shows that arsenic contamination on the site is over two times higher than the allowable limit. Moreover, barium and lead levels also exceed their limits. In the soil samples there were also pieces of tiles, glass and metals found. According to the report authors, all of that could be caused by former municipal incinerator that operated in this area in the past. ©Inter Miami CF
Miami meer Francis Suarez, who was a vocal supporter of the whole project commented on the matter:
“This obviously causes great concerns. [...] Basically, the site has significantly more contamination than what is commercially reasonable.”
As for now Inter Miami officials hired another company to conduct a similar analysis. When its findings are published we will be able to get some further information about the possible cost of the cleanup. In the past, the club estimated spending around $35 million for it if such a necessity emerges, but now some say it could cost up to $50 million.
The report was created when the talks about the lease of the ground between the investors and the city were not yet finished, so we can’t rule out the possibility, that the complex might eventually get built somewhere else.
It is also worth mentioning that a similar problem emerged when the Grapeland Water Park was built next to the golf course in 2008. Then the cost of the clean up was $10 million. When dealing with that case, some suspected that such difficulties could also appear in the Water Park’s surroundings.