January 15, 2013
THE BELMONT COSMOS?
Cosmos confirm they want to build a $400M soccer stadium at the race track
By Michael Lewis
The New York Cosmos confirmed that they want to build a $400 million soccer stadium at Belmont Park.
The Cosmos, who will return to competitive soccer later this season, have submitted plan to State Senator Jack. M. Martins that includes a $400 million investment of private funds.
According to Newsday.com, the 25,000-seat stadium would be finished by 2015 and be ready for use in the spring of 2016.
In a letter to Sandra Smith, the chairperson of the Elmont Coalition for Sustainable Development, Martins, who represents the 7th District, wrote that the Cosmos' proposal includes a soccer stadium, a shopping area, community park, restaurants and a hotel on the south lot of the race track.
A Cosmos spokesman confirmed the team has submitted a bid, but could not disclose further details at this time.
However, Cosmos CEO Seamus O'Brien was quoted by Sports Illustrated: “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 place to eat, shop and play all year round.”
Added Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano: "The Belmont redevelopment proposal is an exciting prospect that will create jobs and complement Nassau's sports entertainment tourism plan."
In his letter, Martins wrote, "It is no secret that I have long supported the idea of developing a sporting venue with complementary shopping, restaurants and a hotel at the Belmont site."
"The plan is real, it has been submitted to New York State, and I am proud to have helped foster its submission."
The Cosmos submitted their plan to New York state.
In his letter, Martins wrote that the RFP process will review the Cosmos' proposal and submissions from other developers and will select a winner.
"I look forward to working with the winner of the RFP process to ensure that the development continues to be a win-win for our communities."
Located in Elmont, N.Y. in Nassau County, Belmont Park had been considered as a possible site for a soccer-specific stadium by Major League Soccer for a second New York City area franchise. Instead, MLS picked Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Flushing, Queens. The league has a 2016 target to open the stadium.
The Cosmos will play at James Shuart Stadium at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. as they return to play in the new North American Soccer League's fall season that is expected to begin in late July or early August.
ThisIsCosmosCountry, the official site of the team's supporters had the original story with Sen. Martin's letter at: http://tinyurl.com/a9osa5t