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Cuomo proposes funding for structured parking at Nassau Coliseum

Nassau Coliseum on Sept. 21, 2013.

Nassau Coliseum on Sept. 21, 2013. Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has proposed spending a combined $150 million to build structured parking at the Nassau Coliseum,  the Ronkonkoma Hub retail and apartment complex and at Lighthouse Landing, a proposed residential complex in Tarrytown. Administration officials could not provide a specific breakdown of how much each structure would get.

The projects were announced Tuesday as part of the governor's infrastructure plans prior to his State of the State address on Wednesday.

Bruce Ratner, executive chairman of Forest City Ratner Companies, is spending $229 million to redevelop the Coliseum and build a sports and entertainment complex around the arena.

Ratner needs about 5,000 parking spots but construction of a multi-story parking garage adjacent to the arena would liberate dozens of acres of blacktop for additional development.

"A state investment in this facility would complement the current private investment and drive hundreds of millions of dollars of additional private investment at the site," Cuomo's office said in a statement.

Donald Monti, president of Plainview-based Renaissance Downtowns was designated the site's "master developer" for the non-entertainment areas. He wants to build a bio-tech park that would house companies involved in health care, robotics and technology and employ around 10,000 people.

But, Monti spokesman Brandon Palanker said a parking garage is "the key domino to fall" to make the project happen.

In 2013, Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano said he wanted to build several parking structures around the Coliseum which would hold a combined 6,500 vehicles, free up 50 acres of land and cost more than $150 million.

Details were not disclosed about the size of the proposed Nassau garage or if the county had secured additional funding for the project.

"This initiative will assist in creating jobs and opportunities while complementing the redeveloped Coliseum and surrounding sports-and-entertainment district," said Mangano.

Ratner said in a statement: “We welcome the state’s investment in parking infrastructure at the Nassau Coliseum site and thank Governor Cuomo for his efforts to spur economic development in New York.”

A 2011 Town of Hempstead zoning change allows parking garages at the Coliseum.


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