The Village of Floral Park on Friday asked a judge for a temporary restraining order to immediately stop certain construction activities on the Belmont arena, toughening its stance in a lawsuit opposing the $1.3 billion development.
Court documents show attorneys for the village asked state Supreme Court Justice Roy Mahon to prohibit developers from:
- Using the eastern portion of the Belmont Park’s North Lot as a staging area for project construction vehicles and/or New York Racing Association support operations or vehicles.
- Driving construction trucks down Plainfield Avenue in Floral Park.
- Sheet pile driving or constructing underground walls at the project site.
"The Village of Floral Park and its residents are already suffering real and significant adverse impacts from these activities, including unsafe traffic conditions and increased truck traffic on Plainfield Avenue with spill-over impacts to other local roadways, constant noise in residential neighborhoods day and night, excessive and offensive odors related to changes in Belmont Park’s horse racing operations caused by the project construction, and damage to property from dirt and dust coming off the construction site," attorneys for the village wrote in court papers filed in Mineola.
The Belmont arena — the new home of the New York Islanders hockey team — gained final state approval in August, and an official groundbreaking took place in September.
The project calls for a 19,000-seat arena for games and concerts; 350,000 square feet of upscale shops and restaurants; a 250-room hotel and parking on 43 acres of vacant state-owned property at Belmont Park.
Empire State Development Corporation, the state agency overseeing the project, spent nearly two years on the environmental analysis, community engagement and public comment.
“This is nothing more than another attempt by the Village of Floral Park to thwart the Belmont redevelopment simply because the village doesn’t like the project," ESD spokesman Jack Sterne said in a statement Friday.
"The Belmont Redevelopment Project went through a transparent, public process that adhered to all requirements under state law and we will continue to vigorously defend it so we can deliver thousands of jobs and billions in economic activity to Nassau County,” Sterne said.
"This Project has just begun and already significant negative impacts are being felt," Floral Park Mayor Dominick Longobardi said a statement Friday night. "Clearly, this project has not been fully thought through and the concerns we have raised are not being addressed. Today’s filing for a temporary restraining order by our counsel seeks the Court’s assistance to address these concerns."