Monday, June 22, 2009
The WORST arena in the United States
Host of the worst skateboarding event in the United States.
Swatch Impact Tour 1988
THE LIGHTHOUSE PROJECT
The Lighthouse at Long Island Top Ten Facts
1. The Lighthouse project will transform the 150-acres at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum site and the surrounding area into Long Island’s signature destination.
2. The Lighthouse is approximately 5.5 million square feet of new mixed-use development and will be designed and developed to be Long Island’s largest LEED, environmentally friendly, project.
3. The Coliseum will be transformed into a state-of-the-art arena providing a premier entertainment experience. With additional and expanded concourses, all new restrooms, VIP suites, larger seats, and first class concessions and restaurants, the arena will comfortably accommodate 17,500 for hockey, 18,500 for basketball and 20,000 fans for concerts.
4. The Sports Complex will be the region’s preferred sports and entertainment facility. It will house four sheets of ice for local teams and clubs, as well as be capable of hosting regional and national events. The facility will also include basketball courts and a state-of-the-art health club.
5. The Lighthouse’s central landscaped park, Celebration Plaza, will be larger than New York City’s Bryant Park, and will soon become Long Island’s favorite meeting place for family concerts, or just relaxing with a friend.
6. The project’s 2,300 residences will include next generation, luxury, active adult and multi-family housing types. There will be a mix of lofts, condominiums, and town houses set amidst quiet neighborhoods or above vibrant retail streetscapes.
7. Long Island’s first five-star hotel will contain 300 rooms, meeting and banquet facilities, and luxury full-service condominiums.
8. The project will have more than 250,000 square feet of Convention, Conference and Exhibition space and will establish Long Island as a preferred destination for national and international programs while giving local companies a place to host their events.
9. One million square feet of new class A office space, including a sports technology center, will attract new industries and create jobs and career opportunities as well as allow local companies to expand in the heart of Nassau County.
10. The project’s approximately 500,000 square feet of complementary retail, restaurants, and cafes will provide great places to dine and shop for residents and visitors alike.
The Lighthouse’s Big Seven Benefits to Long Islanders
1. Increased Tax Revenues
2. New jobs and career opportunities
3. Ability to keep existing and attract new businesses
4. Attractive housing alternatives for Long Islanders
5. Increased property values
6. Creates a destination on Long Island
7. Keeps the NY Islanders on Long Island
How old is the Coliseum?
The Coliseum opened in 1972, and was originally built for 12,900 people. Today the building services over 16,000 people, but has never had any significant improvements to the infrastructure since opening day.
Why aren't there more events at the Coliseum?
The Coliseum's outdated facilities are inadequate for many of today's acts, which rely on modern infrastructure and facilities. Fans often complain that the tight concourse, lack of restrooms and unappealing food choices do not produce the entertainment experience of modern arenas. The proposed improvements will make the arena significantly more attractive to performers, fans and visitors.
What is the build-out time for the project?
The first phase of the project will include the transformation of the Coliseum and the project's infrastructure. It is expected that the Coliseum construction will take two years. The total project will be completed in 8-10 years.
How many jobs will the Lighthouse project create?
Approximately 50,000 construction and construction related jobs will be created during the 8-to-10 year build-out. In addition, many new businesses will be formed to support and service the Lighthouse project, creating many more opportunities for the Long Island workforce. By the completion of the project, approximately 20,000 permanent jobs will be created both on and off the site.
What kind of residential housing will there be at the Lighthouse?
The project's residences will include a mix of lofts, luxury residences, and town houses set in quiet landscaped neighborhoods or above vibrant retail streetscapes. Young professionals, families, and empty nesters will all find a home at the Lighthouse. Landscaped roof gardens and decks will mask below-grade parking, making the Lighthouse green as any manicured suburb.
Will there be hotels at the Lighthouse?
Long Island's first 5-star hotel will be at the Lighthouse and will be fully complemented with the amenities of a 5-star hotel such as exquisite dining options and spa treatments. The Long Island Marriott, which currently is the top hotel on Long Island, is currently undergoing a $40 million capital improvement in anticipation of the project.
February 12, 2009
In six years, if billionaire Charles Wang remains unhappy with the Nassau County digs for his New York Islanders, Queens would make an excellent home for the hockey team, the borough's chamber of commerce said. Team officials, however, say they aren't interested. Jack Friedman, executive vice president of the Queens Chambers of Commerce, said the team could benefit from the $3-billion redevelopment project planned for the Willets Point area near Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. But Wang can't easily pick up and move. The team's lease with Nassau County prohibits moving until 2015. The agreement says the team cannot play any home games during the regular season anywhere but Nassau Coliseum, which the county owns. County officials said they won't allow Wang out of the agreement. Since 2006, Nassau County has received $2.5 million in revenue generated from the Islanders' admissions and advertisement sales alone.
ISLANDERS SUGGEST A MOVE IS POSSIBLE
March 5, 2009
East Hempstead, N.Y. - When it comes to threatening to move the Islanders if he doesn't get a new arena, team owner Charles Wang says told town officials to approve the $3 billion Lighthouse project or the Islanders are gone.
The threat is tucked deep into the 6,000-page draft environmental impact statement the Lighthouse developers delivered to the Town of Hempstead on Feb. 24. Section 7.0 deals with the economic impact to the town, Nassau County and Long Island if the Lighthouse is not approved by the town.
"The transformation of the Coliseum, including the sports complex and associated parking," the developers' report states, "is expected to cost hundreds of millions of dollars [and] is essential if the New York Islanders are to remain. In order to absorb the cost of this transformation, it is necessary to develop the remainder of the components of the Lighthouse. Thus, if the Lighthouse is not approved and developed in a manner that can financially support the transformation of the Coliseum, the New York Islanders will leave this venue."
Wang has long maintained he needs more than just a new or rebuilt arena to keep the Islanders on Long Island.
Nassau County spokesman, Bruce Nyman, said: "This isn't the first time we've heard this. As a matter of fact, it's in the dictionary under the phrase Ôworst-kept secret.' There's no reason for us to even go there. The point has been made and everyone in town and county government understands the importance of moving this forward."
Wang has already received offers from politicians in Queens and Brooklyn to facilitate a move to those boroughs, and the Islanders are planning on playing exhibition games before next season in NHL-hungry Kansas City and Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. (Newsday)
WANG EXPRESSES REGRET FOR BUYING ISLANDERS
May 7, 2009
Uniondale, N.Y. - If Charles Wang could get a do-over, he wouldnÕt have purchased the Islanders. The financial losses and struggles to upgrade the teamÕs arena and create a new development on Long Island have been too much.
Audited financial reports reviewed by Newsday show Wang has spent $208.8 million - an average of $23 million per year Ð to keep the NHL franchise operating since his purchase. That's after spending $74.2 million to buy the team and assuming $97 million in existing liabilities. This year alone, Wang has provided $33.5 million in 12 payments, said a document provided to Newsday by Islanders chief financial officer Art McCarthy. There's still two months left on their July 1 to June 30 calendar, but McCarthy hopes the incoming season ticket deposits for next season are enough to push back Wang's next payment until the fall.
Wang said he knew going in that he was going to lose money, but he is proud that he was able to save the Islanders from leaving Long Island nine years ago, and that it was important to him that the sports team got a legitimate shot to succeed. Before Wang's purchase of the team, many area public figures asked him to step in Ð an action that the financial documents show has cost him close to $300 million.
After buying the Islanders, Wang said he assumed - wrongly, it turned out - that Nassau Coliseum would either be refurbished or replaced within a few years. He says he wouldn't ever have envisioned entering his second decade as the Islanders owner with home games still taking place at the aging arena on Hempstead Turnpike.
Wang initially thought Nassau County government would subsidize the redeveloped arena. But after County Executive Thomas Suozzi told him that wasn't possible because of the county's financial state, Wang said they came up with the plan to privately develop the 70 acres of land surrounding the arena.
The Lighthouse Project - a $3.7 billion joint venture with RXR Realty chief Scott Rechler - has Suozzi's backing and is currently under review by the Town of Hempstead, where Wang says it is being held up.
He hopes the issues will be resolved soon and while he hasnÕt threatened to move the team, he does say heÕll keep all options open, including considering a new arena in Kansas City that is awaiting a pro team. Queens officials are also interested in hosting the team in a new building. The teamÕs lease expires in 2015.
Season Total Capacity Change
1992-93 486,341 73% 21.1%
1993-94 499,823 75% 2.8%
1994-95 301,764 77% -39.6%
1995-96 465,596 70% 54.3%
1996-97 512,279 77% 10%
1997-98 493,023 74% -3.8%
1998-99 461,576 69% -6.4%
1999-00 399,671 60% -13.4%
2000-01 464,627 69.5% 16.2%
2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05
596,498 612,154 551,711 None
2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09
516,973 528,331 559,247 564,697
1994-1995 - Attendance for 24 games due to NHL lockout
2004-2005 - NHL lockout
Retired Numbers ## Al Arbour
## Bill Torey
#5 Denis Potvin
#9 Clark Gillies
#19 Bryan Trottier
#22 Mike Bossy
#23 Bob Nystrom
#31 Billy Smith
#99 Wayne Gretzky?