Recently, Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic concluded an incredible two weeks of tennis in London by capturing the singles titles at Wimbledon. Before heading across the pond, Williams and Djokovic brought their talents to Miami, thrilling fans on their way to winning Miami Open titles.
Over the last 30 years, the Miami Open has been a leader in the industry and attracted the greatest players in tennis to South Florida. From Martina Navratilova and Serena Williams to Jimmy Connors and Novak Djokovic, the greatest players of all-time have competed in our event.
Unfortunately, the Miami Open’s ability to continue calling Miami home is now in question. As other tennis events continue to renovate and improve the quality of their facilities, those at the Crandon Park Tennis Center have greatly fallen behind.
The Miami Open stands ready to privately fund improvements to the Crandon Park Tennis Center that will not only upgrade the tennis facilities, but will also enhance the park for local residents to enjoy year-round. These improvements could cost up to $50 million.
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More than three years ago, our plan for park improvements was approved by 73 percent of Miami-Dade voters.
Those renovations include the building of new permanent facilities, improving the existing Tennis Center, and adding more shade areas along with lush landscaping. All of these upgrades would be available for public use 50 weeks of the year.
But here we are, three years later, and improvements haven’t yet begun. There has been a series of lawsuits involving the family who sold Crandon Park to the county in exchange for the creation of the Rickenbacker Causeway that has delayed the project. The case is currently in front of the Florida Third District Court of Appeal.
The Miami Open is a proud part of the fabric of Miami-Dade County.
Each year more than 300,000 fans attend the tournament, generating $386 million annually in economic impact in the county. In addition, the eyes of the world are on Miami during the tournament, with 13,000 hours of global television.
We want the residents of the Miami-Dade County to know that the tournament wants to continue its legacy in Miami and is doing all in its power to preserve Crandon Park as the home of the Miami Open.
We genuinely appreciate the support we have received from this community over the years and hope we will be able to continue that history with a park that will allow us to continue to attract the world’s top tennis talent.
Adam Barrett, director, Miami Open Tournament, Coral Gables