Formula 1’s proposed Miami Grand Prix may be commercially agreed, but local authorities have shot down the proposed layout at a county meeting.
Two weeks ago, it was announced that Formula 1 has agreed a commercial deal with Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium to host a Grand Prix there from 2021. The operative phrase was that the deal was agreed ‘in principle’, but that there were several obstacles to be overcome in terms of planning.
This included getting the Miami-Dade County Commission to sign off on the proposed layout which utilised public roads around the Hard Rock Stadium. This would obviously involve several road closures, and members of the public showed up in force at Tuesday’s council meeting to voice their displeasure.
According to CBS Miami, the meeting saw a large representation from residential areas in the Miami Gardens area – all of whom are against the race going ahead. One resident said: “We have an asteroid coming to our community. We gotta stop it. It comes in the form of Formula 1.”
A supporter at the meeting said: “We cannot walk away from major events. This county, the people who live here, need their jobs and need these opportunities and we need Formula 1.”
Following the meeting, it was decided by the County Commission that an order would be passed that would prevent road closures for races in residential areas of Miami Gardens – meaning that the route revealed by Miami Grand Prix event organisers two weeks ago is not permitted.
“Right now, it’s a victory,” said Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert. “They can’t have Formula 1 racing in Miami Gardens. That’s important, and they definitely can’t use a public roadway, which was 199th which was the plan.”
The other order made was to require a public hearing before any racing would be permitted on closed roads in the area.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez is in favour of the event going ahead, and does have the power to veto the decisions made by the county commission – however unlikely that may be. For now, he’s trying to reach a compromise between the two warring sides as he says the uplift for the local economy would be ‘incredible’: “It is a world-class event, it is like having a Super Bowl here every year in Miami Dade County,” he said.
FormulaSpy has reached out to the Miami Grand Prix event organisers for a statement following these changes of circumstances.