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Laura Curran files benchmarks for $1.5 billion Hub redevelopment in Nassau

NYCB Live's Nassau Coliseum on April 5, 2017.

NYCB Live's Nassau Coliseum on April 5, 2017. Credit: All Island Aerial/Kevin P. Coughlin

Nassau County officials have set formal benchmarks for a $1.5 billion plan to develop housing, retail and office space surrounding Nassau's NYCB Live, including a requirement that developers secure $85 million in state funding to build additional parking on the property.

County Executive Laura Curran has proposed a development plan agreement and revisions to the Coliseum lease. BSE Global manages and operates the Coliseum.

The proposed lease changes are among several that will come before the 19-member county legislature and are part of an effort to accelerate work on the project.

Under the revisions, Nassau would eliminate the requirement that the Brooklyn Nets play an NBA preseason game at the Coliseum, said Evlyn Tsimis, deputy county executive for economic development.

The amendments also would allow the Coliseum to present youth clinics coached by the players from the New York Mets or Yankees. The Yankees players are the only ones allowed to coach, under current terms.

A revised lease would give RXR Realty and BSE Global exclusive rights to develop on the area around the Coliseum, known as the Nassau Hub. 

It also would shift full control of the lease  to BSE Global’s parent company, Onexim Sports and Entertainment Holding USA. Forest City Ratner has a 15 percent stake in the lease.

The Curran agreement also requires developers to draw up and file conceptual and site plans with the Town of Hempstead that conform to town zoning codes.

Another requirement is that developers propose an agreement to provide benefits for surrounding neighborhoods.

Newsday reported in July that the Nets would not play a preseason game at NYCB Live this fall. The team cited the NBA’s decision to reduce the number of preseason games, and the team has scheduled its only home preseason game at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

The lease amendments also would allow the Coliseum to enter into contracts with national boxing promotion companies, rather than the sole company specified in the existing lease, Golden Boy Promotions LLC.

“These benchmarks are incredibly important, because it shows that we are monitoring it very closely," Curran said in an interview. "We’re requiring accountability, and we want to make sure at every stage this proceeds appropriately and responsibly."

Tsimis said “the county has struggled for 15-20 years to advance a comprehensive redevelopment plan" and that the developer's agreement “offers a framework for going forward."

Legis. Kevan Abrahams (D-Freeport), the legislature's minority leader, called the proposed lease changes "broad strokes" that talk about "what the future of what the Coliseum property will look like. We need to see the devil-in-the-details type of stuff to go forward."

A spokesman for majority Republicans could not be reached for comment.

Brett Yormark, chief executive of BSE Global, said in a statement, “we’re thrilled to propose a dynamic plan under the rights of our lease and move forward with a concept that focuses on developing a live, work, play environment."

“We look forward to the opportunity to work with the County Executive, the Legislature, our partners at BSE Global and especially the residents of the surrounding communities to formulate plans to advance this important project,” said Scott Rechler, Chairman and CEO of Uniondale-based RXR Realty, in a statement.

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