Dolphins cancel stadium renovation plans amid public financing flap

Doug Benc

The team has called off plans to renovate Sun Life Stadium after they failed to secure public financing methods.

The Miami Dolphins have scrapped plans to renovate Sun Life Stadium after the stadium funding bill wasn't brought to a vote in the Florida House of Representatives, according to Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post.

The bill, which was passed by the Florida Senate, wasn't brought to a vote by House speaker Will Weatherford prior to the end of the legislative session, which means Miami-Dade County residents will not have a chance to vote on the funding referendum.

The Dolphins want to renovate Sun Life, and were hoping to fund part of the project by lifting the hotel bed tax cap from six to seven percent. The team was also hoping to secure roughly $90 million in sales tax rebates over the next 30 years. However, without public funding, the $400 million project has been scuttled.

Sun Life Stadium, which was originally built in 1987 for $115 million, is the sixth-oldest stadium in the NFL that has never been renovated. Without renovations, it's unlikely that it will be used as a Super Bowl site. Dolphins CEO Mike Dee also said that the lack of renovations or a new stadium could jeopardize the team's future in the city.

Publicly financed stadia are not the most popular things in South Florida at the moment, as the city will be stuck with a ludicrously expensive bill for Marlins Park for decades.

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