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Long Island village sues to block $1.3B Belmont Park redevelopment and arena plan


A Long Island village has sued the state to block a planned massive redevelopment of Belmont Park race track, claiming officials improperly handed over the deal to one developer and ignored the impact on neighboring communities.

Floral Park, a community of 15,000 that touts itself as “a great place to live,” is asking a state Supreme Court judge to delay the sprawling $1.3 billion project that’s scheduled to launch at the end of September.

“It is truly unfortunate that this is how this process is unfolding,” Floral Park Mayor Dominick Longobardi said in a statement Tuesday.

The suit claims that state officials cooked up a “secret plan” that handed the 10-figure deal to a development company known as New York Arena Partners, which is partially owned by the New York Mets and New York Islanders hockey team.

It plans to build a 19,000-seat arena that would be a new home for the Islanders along with a mall and hotel on 43 acres of state-owned land at the race course.

Floral Park, which is just three miles north of the track, also charges that environmental reviews failed to assess the impact of a new Long Island Rail Road station that would be built as part of the redevelopment plan.

Gov. Cuomo’s office dismissed the suit as a “stunt,” and Empire State Development, the agency spearheading the plan, refused to comment, according to Newsday.