While one part of Orlando is prepping for a giant, professional soccer stadium, a proposal in another part of the city would create a facility where tomorrow's superstars would potentially emerge.
A Ronaldo Soccer Academyis proposed for nearly five vacant acres at 3516 President Barack Obama Pkwy., at the northeast corner of Obama Parkway and L.B. McLeod Road in southwest Orlando.
If the enterprise is like other Ronaldo soccer programs, it will be part of a franchise for children four years old to 18 years old.
The Brazilian soccer star Ronaldo Nazario, who at one point held the record for the most goals scored in World Cup finals, has opened soccer academies in this country and abroad, including China and the Ukraine.
Property records show the site is owned by Campedro Realty LLC, whose principals are Carlos, Charles and Luis Martins. The Martins could not be reached for comment. A check of their business dealings shows a track record of being part of limited liability corporations that make purchases on behalf of other people.
The Martin's mailing address is in care of Milton Schwartz, a partner with the New York law firm of Grant, Herrmann, Schwartz & Klinger, whose practice includes helping foreigners invest in US real estate. When reached, Schwartz declined to comment.
The property the soccer academy would go on was bought by Campedro Realty in October for $770,000, property records show. The seller was Clearview Systems, which purchased the property for $405,900 in mid-2012, records state.
Florida Engineering Group is acting as applicant for the project, which is seeking from Orlando planners a designation of public benefit use in an industrial park. The request is expected to be heard Jan. 19.
The soccer academy would include four fields used for games and training sessions. The facility would also have a 4,316-square-foot clubhouse that would contain a café with interior and exterior seating, locker rooms, a meeting room and space for support services.
Meanwhile, construction manager Barton Malow Co. is planning to create in downtown Orlando a $155 million, 25,500-seat athletic arena for the Orlando City Lions MLS team.