Cuomo announces new LIRR station as part of Belmont Park redevelopment project

Posted On Tue, July 9, 2019 By

Posted On Tue, July 9, 2019 By In Transportation

Rendering courtesy of Governor Cuomo’s office

Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced plans for a new Long Island Rail Road station to be built as part of the Belmont Park Redevelopment Project, which will provide a home base for the National Hockey League’s New York Islanders. The station will serve the proposed 19,000-seat arena, a 250-room hotel, and a 435,000-square-foot retail complex at the state-owned horseracing venue, as well as local commuters who have long needed more transportation options. Located between the Queens Village and Bellerose stations on the LIRR’s Main Line, the station will be the first full-time LIRR station built in 50 years. It’s expected to be partially open by 2021—as the Islanders arena opens to the public—and fully operational by 2023.

Rendering courtesy of Governor Cuomo’s office

“The Belmont project will help drive the region’s economy forward while building the Islanders a state-of-the-art facility at home on Long Island, creating thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in economic output along the way,” Governor Cuomo said.”We will provide millions of visitors and fans a fast and affordable way to get there and continue New York’s nation-leading investments in 21st-century transportation infrastructure.”

The new station will provide direct service to Belmont Park from both the east and west, as opposed to the LIRR spur, which currently only provides westbound service. In addition to providing service to the new entertainment complex, the station will provide a much-needed commuting option for area residents. The station is expected to receive service every half hour during peak times and hourly during off-peak periods. The parking lot north of the Belmont race track, which has 2,860 spaces, will be shared by commuters and arena patrons.

The deal involves a partnership with New York Arena Partners, the private development group behind the Belmont Park project. Constructing the new full-time station on the LIRR’s Main Line and upgrading the existing spur is estimated to cost $105 million, of which $30 million is to be funded by the developers initially and $75 million is to be funded by the state. The developers are expected to contribute an additional $67 million over time to offset the state’s costs, according to reports. The developers will also receive economic incentives, including a 20-year abatement period for the hotel and a 15-year abatement for the retail complex.

“The addition of a full-time train station to serve Belmont Park and the surrounding community is critical to the success of the Belmont redevelopment project, and it’s a huge win for my constituents who will finally have a stop on the LIRR Main Line,” said Senator Anna M. Kaplan in a statement.

Along with the announcement, the Governor’s office also released an economic analysis of the project prepared by BJH Advisors which shows the project will buoy the region’s economy, creating approximately 10,000 construction jobs and 3,200 permanent jobs, generating nearly $50 million in new public revenue annually, creating approximately $725 million in annual economic activity and generating annual employee earnings of roughly $133 million.

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