NYCFC Lose Out On Belmont Stadium Bid

The property set aside for the new hockey arena borders on the Cross Island Parkway adjacent to the racetrack's grandstand.

After a tumultuous few years for the New York Islanders in Brooklyn, the team is heading back to Long Island, where they belong. The Islanders moved out of their previous home, the Nassau County Veterans Coliseum, in 2015, and now play in Brooklyn's Barclay's Center.

There could soon be more certainty surrounding the New York Islanders' arena pursuit, as Newsday reports that a decision on the Belmont Park site will be announced Wednesday.

John Tavares has yet to re-sign a contract to stay with the Islanders long-term but with the future stadium news cleared up, the Isles can officially make re-signing the captain a top priority.

Barclays Center is not terrible and the Islanders are a great home team, but, the arena is not great for hockey and does not have the same ambiance or ice conditions as the Nassau Coliseum, the Isles' previous home. The Islanders outlined their development plans at a public meeting in Elmont earlier this month.

The Islanders want to build an 18,000-seat, year-round arena that would host 150 events annually as well as 435,000-square feet of space for retail, a hotel with 200 to 250 rooms and a 10,000-square foot "innovation center" that would be developed with resident input. The purchase price - much more than the $325 million value of the team estimated by Forbes - was based in part on the team having a home in New York City. That plan also includes 400,000 square feet for dining and retail as well as 5.2 acres for a community park and two acres dedicated to small soccer fields to be used by the local community. Islanders owner Jon Ledecky has stated that the team will play at least another season in Brooklyn. The team still has a lease to play at the arena but will opt out in January.

Discussions for development of Belmont Park began 12 years ago, but initially did not include a sports arena.

  • Rosalie Stanley