NY Islanders Bid Selected For Belmont Park Development

The Islanders currently play at Barclays Center but are looking to move

According to Newsday sources, the team's bid to build an arena at Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y., was selected.

The Islanders are in desperate need of a new home and the news of a possible winning bid can not come soon enough. The team is partnering with Sterling Project Development - run by the Wilpon family, which owns the New York Mets - and Oak View Group, which is also spearheading the redevelopment of KeyArena in Seattle for potential National Hockey League expansion. The Belmont Park site has been cited as having a few advantages for the Islanders, including a more accessible location for the team's fan base on Long Island and enough room for surrounding development.

A press conference announcing the victor is scheduled for 11 a.m. Wednesday at the Belmont Park racetrack.

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The Islanders will remain in Barclays Center for next year and perhaps more.

The arena likely would not be finished by the start of the 2019-20 season as the Islanders and Oak View Group - the development company that has gone in on this bid with the Islanders - would not break ground.

The approved plan calls for the Islanders to build an 18,000-seat, all-weather stadium; a 200- to 250-bed hotel; a 10,000-square-foot "innovation center"; and more than 400,000 square feet of retail space. The re-developed Nassau Coliseum could be the best option. The Islanders and Barclays Center have spoken of amending their agreement, which could allow the team to play in Brooklyn while its new home is built.

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Islanders co-owner Jon Ledecky has said the team will continue to play at Barclays Center through next season as they are contractually obligated to do. Belmont Park racetrack, which opened in 1905, runs thoroughbred meets from April through July and then in September through October. The Isles' bid also includes plans to reopen the nearby Long Island Rail Road Belmont Park station stop.

The team is now negotiating with Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, which operates Barclays Center and Nassau Coliseum, on amending their lease.

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