F1 forced to hit the brakes on Miami GP following local opposition

Formula 1’s proposed Miami Grand Prix at the Hard Rock Stadium has hit another setback following local opposition at a meeting of the board of county commissioners.

It was argued by those opposing the Grand Prix that the event at the stadium required a large-scale public hearing to discuss the extent of the impact it would cause to the local community.  

Opposition group leader and former county commissioner Betty T Ferguson cited air and noise pollution as potential impacts as well as disruptions due to road closures:  “It’s Formula 1 racing in a bedroom community. The majority of residents in Miami Gardens do not want to see F1 racing at Hard Rock Stadium; the Miami Gardens city council voted to oppose Formula 1.

“We have seen too often deep pockets paint rosy pictures and have their way, only to the embarrassment of the county at a later date. Don’t allow F1 promoters to come in and roll over us over, like we’re not even humans.

“They can produce all kinds of phony statements about how they can mitigate the deadly effects, but we can never erase deadly health damage, and possibly permanent hearing loss, especially to children. Even the county’s own study verifies the deadly effects.

“No permission for road closure or special events should be given to the Dolphins without full public hearing.”

F1 owners previously reached an agreement in principle earlier this month to host the race at the Miami Dolphins’s stadium as from 2021, however, following the opposition, two resolutions have been passed that relate to both the requirement of approval after a public hearing and public road closures requiring county commissioner-level approval.

Oliver Gilbert, mayor of Miami Gardens, backed the opposition against F1’s plans, concluding: “We forget that there’s a whole community of people who will be impacted by this. I’m not against events at the stadium, but let’s be clear – all events are not equal and all events are not welcome.”