Belmont Park development would greatly impact village: Floral Park mayor

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Development at Belmont Park would greatly impact the Village of Floral Park, according to Mayor Dominick Longobardi. (Photo courtesy of Belmont Park)

Development at Belmont Park would affect everything the Village of Floral Park does, Mayor Dominick Longobardi said at Tuesday’s board meeting.

Longobardi and Deputy Mayor Kevin Fitzgerald attended a meeting on Nov. 28 with the Empire State Development Corp. where development plans were discussed, Fitzgerald said.

There will be a public meeting on 4:30 p.m. on Sunday at Elmont High School, hosted by state Sens. Elaine Phillips, Todd Kaminsky and Leroy Comrie.

Longobardi and Fitzgerald said they strongly encourage residents to attend.

“Development at Belmont Park is going to impact everything we do depending on what happens,” Longobardi said. “It is a great opportunity for all of us … to find out more details, if possible, what’s going to happen at Belmont.”

There are two bidders for Belmont, the New York Islanders and the New York City FC soccer club. A third bidder, the Syosset-based Blumenfeld Development Group, withdrew its bid on Monday due to a selection process that it said seemed to be predetermined, according to Newsday.

The bidders are seeking to build a sports arena.

The Islanders’ owner, Jonathan Ledecky, told Newsday the arena would “galvanize the community in a very positive way.”

Fitzgerald said the board finds it questionable how the owner can make such a statement without hearing the village’s concerns.

Fitzgerald said the board has reached out to the Islanders only to be informed that the team owners cannot speak to village officials while the application is pending.

“We are asking them once again to meet with us so they can listen directly to our concerns on how an arena can have significant adverse effects on the daily lives of our residents of Floral Park,” Fitzgerald said.

One issue concerns transportation, according to a village resident. The Islanders’ bid is backed by Oak View Group, whose investors include James Dolan, the executive owner of the Madison Square Garden Co.

“These guys know how to throw money around,” the resident said.”They know how to get their deals done … they could very easily throw their weight around and maybe even do something like create public busing from Floral Park train station to Belmont Park in order to accommodate New York Islander fans coming from out of Long Island.”

 

At the meeting, the board also took time during the meeting to thank five village employees who received the New York Conference of Mayors service award.

“It’s one thing to have a career, but another to put your heart and soul into that career,” Longobardi said.

The recognized employees were Thomas Mack, for 35 years of service, Richard Albertson, for 35 years of service, Thomas Asfar, for 25 years of service, Evelyn Schultz, for 35 years of service and Paul Abruzzese, for 40 years of service.

6 COMMENTS

  1. New York Islanders ownners John Ledecky and Scot Malkin bought the majority share of the team a couple of years ago and immediately identified the opportunity at Belmont Park to bring the team ‘back home’. The owners are a bit shy of talking specifics regarding the project in the press at this point only so as to not be presumptuous regarding the process of ESD making its choice on who will be the successful bidder. However, the meeting in Elmont this Sunday is an excellent opportunity for the community to ask questions regarding the proposals. I personally belive that this is could be a win for everyone including the local community, fans of horse racing and of the Islanders and – as far as the arena project goes – one need look no further than the practice facility Ledecky and Malkin built for the team at Eisenhower Park to get an idea of what kind of level their projects are on.

  2. Bus service from the Floral Park train station? Mr. Mayor have you been to Belmont, there is a station there now, hopefully to be upgraded, Islander fans have no desire to get on a train and then be packed into buses to get to a game, we don’t like changing at Jamaica, your idea is worse!

    • I believe most people who would us the LIRR from out east would have to go into Jamaica for a train to Belmont and then come back. It would be easier to go into New Hyde Park or FLoral Park and use bus service. Hempstead Turnpike, Jamaica Avenue and the Cross Island would be a mess. Short cuts through Floral Park, Bellerose Village, Queens Village would be used as much as possible, and after the games all the drunks would be doing the same.

  3. As a mom who resides in Elmont, Elmont needs a plan that prioritizes community-building and sustainable growth. We want a plan that promotes responsible development that revitalizes Elmont and strengthens our community in a way that improves the quality of life for all Elmont residents and the region at large. This plan is not the way to go.

  4. You all need to chill know what the hell you are talking about …… as stated you dont need buses from floral park there is a train station already… just needs to be ” fixed up”…. as far as traceys comment…. there would be jobs all year that would help the community. those residents in Floral Park get over yourself floral park starts way behind belmont park and the village is money hungry You can get ticket for parking on the street when the No parking sign is blocks away and as a non resident figure there is no sign on this block I can park. So just think of all the money you would make if people park on the street, but they won’t.. there is plenty of parking at belmont.

  5. Here is what the Islanders, then playing in Uniondale, provided: Before and after games, the restaurants in that area did much more business! I would submit Friday’s and Bertucci’s on Merrick Avenue, Borrelli’s on Hempstead Tpke and Chili’s on Corporate Drive as places where Islander fans, as well as traveling fans of opposing teams, frequented. I know this because these were places where myself and my group ALWAYS frequented…either before of after games…sometimes both! And these places were ALWAYS festooned with folks in hockey garb…as I’ve said twice already, both before and after games! How could you be against local businesses doing more business?

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