In a ground-breaking ceremony that included the New York Islanders, National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman, local leaders and hockey fans, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo this week heralded construction of the New York Islanders’ new arena at Belmont Park. The arena will anchor the $1.3 billion Belmont Park redevelopment project that promises to create 10,000 jobs and generate $2.7 billion in economic activity for the region. The new 19,000-seat arena, which will host the hockey team and other events, is part of the governor’s effort to transform 43 acres of parking lots into a top destination for sports, hospitality and retail, with a 250-key hotel, a retail village and office and community space to come.
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Rendering courtesy of Dattner Architects
Nearly a year ago, L+M Development Partners and Hornig Capital Partners broke ground on a $156 million, mixed-use development on the St. Barnabas Hospital campus in the Belmont section of the Bronx, adjacent to Little Italy’s Arthur Avenue and just a short walk to the Bronx Zoo. A pair of all-affordable housing projects–an 11-story, 181-unit building at 4511 Third Avenue and a 12-story, 133-unit building down the street at 4439 Third Avenue–the Dattner Architects-designed complex aims to combine health care services, affordable housing, job creation, outdoor fitness areas, and healthy food options to low-income residents of the community. And these residents earning 60 percent of the area median income can now apply for 218 apartments, ranging from $865/month studios to $1,289/month three-bedrooms.
Photo by Chris Goldberg/Flickr
The Bronx’s Belmont community can date its history all the way back to 1792, when French tobacconist Pierre Abraham Lorillard opened the Lorillard Snuff Mill as the first tobacco firm in the country, and possibly the world. European influences continued to proliferate in the area, and at the turn of the 19th century, flocks of Italian immigrants moved to Belmont to take jobs in the newly opened Botanical Gardens and Bronx Zoo. By 1913, the neighborhood was referred to as the Italian “colonies” in the Bronx.
Today, Belmont’s main artery, Arthur Avenue, still thrives as a bustling Italian center, with countless restaurants, pastry shops, butchers, and more. But there’s a lot more to Belmont than just spaghetti and cannoli. From the origins of a pasta shop’s sign that’s now featured on Broadway to a Neapolitan restaurant that was born in Cairo, Egypt, the Belmont BID shares six secrets of this saucy neighborhood.