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Cosmos Hope To Score With Proposed Stadium At Belmont Racetrack

The New York Cosmos have submitted a proposal to build a 25,000-seat soccer stadium at Belmont Parl. 

The so-called Elmont Town Crossing will involve transforming two sections of Belmont Park into an entertainment complex, with a “Restaurant Row” of nine new eateries, nearly 250,000 square feet of retail space, a 175-room hotel and the development of a brand-new 4.3-acre public park for the residential community.

The proposed development was formally delivered to the Empire State Development Corporation,  the state’s economic development arm, on Jan. 11 and is expected to cost more than $400 million. It would create more than 500 construction jobs and over 3,000 full-time permanent jobs.

Construction alone would generate more than $500 million, concentrated in Nassau County, plus more than $200 million in revenue annually upon completion.

In addition to the stadium and the public park, a smaller soccer field would also be built on the premises and the proposal also includes a commitment to beautify the surrounding landscape. 

The site would be open to local soccer teams for practice and play, with the Cosmos pledging $2.5 million for the redesign and development of community soccer fields.

“We plan to develop an iconic project for the region and build a state-of-the-art stadium that will make Nassau County and the entire region proud,” said Seamus O’Brien, chairman and CEO of the New York Cosmos. “Belmont is an ideal location and a win-win for everyone involved. Nassau County and Elmont will realize much needed economic growth, and local residents will have a year-round premier destination they can call their own.”

Elmont Crossings would feature new transportation improvements, including improved access, enhanced parking options and better circulation for vehicles and pedestrians. These improvements would complement existing connections to the Cross Island Parkway and public transportation links such as the Long Island Rail Road, MTA bus and Nassau Intercounty Express (NICE) bus.

The Cosmos would hope to break ground in 2014 if the proposal is approved, with the stadium completed by the end of 2015 and the field being installed and stadium opened in spring 2016. Retail establishments are expected to open in the autumn of 2015.

Populous, Spector Group,  Cameron Engineering and Turner Construction would develop and build the site. These companies have worked on a wide array of big-ticket projects, including the new Yankee Stadium, the plan for the 2012 Olympics in London, the Bronx Mental Health Redevelopment Project, the Barclays Center and the Molloy College Master Plan.

“This project, bringing a stadium, retail, restaurants and a park for the local community is just the shot in the arm our local economy needs,” said Kevin Law,  president of the Long Island Association, the region’s l;argest business and civic organization. “Long Island has been hit particularly hard by the economic downturn. Elmont Town Crossings will enable us to take a step forward.”

Elmont Memorial High School Principal John Capozzi said, “We are 100 percent behind the Cosmos. No other organization has come to Elmont with a proposal like this. Our community thrives on soccer. Bringing professional soccer and a field for our kids to play on to Elmont would mean the world to us.”

Sandra Smith, chair of the Elmont Coalition for Sustainable Development, said, “The NY Cosmos plan is a big win for Belmont and Elmont. Their proposal revitalizes our community, creates jobs and expands the tax base. I can only think of one word to describe a plan that brings soccer, shopping, a community park and hotel to Elmont: GOAL!”

More information and additional renderings can be found at www.newcosmosstadium.com.