Miami Beach, Fla., voters Tuesday overwhelmingly agreed to increase the local tourist tax by 1%.
There were 4,783 votes in favor, or 67% of the ballots cast. The tax is levied on short-term room rentals.
City Commissioners intend to use the tax increase to leverage a public-private partnership, and pay debt service if needed, to develop a 52-acre entertainment district.
The area encompasses an existing 1.16 million-square-foot convention center, which the city has wanted to expand for years.
The total project is estimated to cost $1 billion. Commissioners are currently considering developers’ proposals.
The plan is to add another 960,000 square feet to the convention center and redevelop city-owned surrounding areas to include a new convention center hotel, outdoor public spaces, parking, restaurants, an entertainment district, as well as retail, commercial and residential areas.
Commissioners hope to select a concessionaire in the next few months.