While the proposed soccer stadium has captured the attention of the media, I do not believe this is the best use of this unique deep water basin.
As the past chairman of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, I saw firsthand the impact the boating public and industry has on our South Florida economy.
Recent data shows that South Florida boat owners pump almost $662 million per year into our economy through their recreational activities. This economic driver is there year after year.
The city of Miami has just spent $15 million on seawalls, $3 million on bollards and $8 million on the 21-acre park that will soon be opened to the public.
The entire bill, all $26 million, will need to be paid back by the taxpayers of Miami, but we have not even reached out to the marine industry to see what they can bring to the table.
Why haven't we considered putting up a breakwater and making the slip a marina for the public?
Wouldn’t it be nice to travel to the Perez Art Museum Miami, Museum of Science and Heat games by boat and dock in a safe harbor marina?
It is time to broaden our vision and reach out to the boating industry and others to explore the potential for the long term use of this deep water basin so we can make an informed decision on the best use of this remarkable property. Marine recreation is a part of who we are.
Rodney Barreto, Miami