It’s all or nothing for the New York Islanders at Belmont Park.
The National Hockey League team’s co-owner, Jon Ledecky, told Newsday Sunday that he and his partners are “ready to go and all in” on making the race track are in Elmont, N.Y. its permanent home.
“W have no Plan B and we haven’t even thought about one,” Ledecky was quoted by the Long Island newspaper.
New York City FC, which also has submitted a stadium bid, could face an uphill battle against the Islanders’ bid. The hockey club wants to return to Nassau County. They called the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y. their home from 1972-2015. The Islanders have played the last three NHL seasons, including this one, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
NYCFC, the Islanders and Syosset-based developer Blumenfeld Development Group. submitted bids to the Empire State Development Corp. Sept. 28. The ESDC hasn’t announced when a decision would be made.
The ESDC announced in July a request for proposals to develop 36 acres of vacant parking lots at the racetrack.
Ledecky felt playing at Belmont would be a win-win situation in several ways.
“It will galvanize the fan base and we think it’s a tremendous opportunity for the Long Island area to have a world-class, really state-of-the-art arena,” he told Newsday reporter Jim Baumbach.
On Sept. 28, NYCFC, which has called Yankee Stadium home since joining Major League Soccer as an expansion team in 2015, put in a bid for Belmont that includes a recreational area for fans outside the stadium. A retail component reportedly also is being proposed by Related Cos., a Manhattan-based developer.
The soccer club has expressed interest in three other locations — the Harlem River Yards in the South Bronx and a spot near the stadium and in Flushing, according to Newsday.
City became the second soccer team to bid Belmont as the Cosmos (North American Soccer League) placed a proposal in January 2013 before the ESDC and waited for three years before it asked them and other bidders to resubmit their proposals.
For the Newsday story, visit: