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Locustwood / Gotham Civic Association
Elmont, Long Island, New York 11003

Next Meeting:

December 18
7:30 PM



Town Welcomes Belmont Plans

Hempstead Town Welcomes State Belmont Plans

Clearly focused on a more vibrant and revitalized Elmont, Hempstead Town officials have welcomed an announcement by Governor David Paterson and Senator Dean Skelos regarding economic development at the Belmont Park race track area. Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray and Councilmen James Darcy and Edward Ambrosino stated that the partnership of state leaders would bolster and complement the efforts of the Town of Hempstead in the area of economic revitalization.

"Hempstead Town has been working hard to ensure that Elmont achieves its fullest economic potential," stated Murray. "The fact that the Governor and Senator Skelos want to create an 'economic engine' in Elmont is positive news that will benefit the business community and local residents alike."

The proposal by Governor David Paterson and Senator Skelos would consider commercial development for 430 acres of underutilized parking lots owned by the track. Some of the prospective redevelopment alternatives that have been mentioned include a hotel and entertainment center, restaurants and retail uses. The state officials have requested that developers furnish proposals by December 31st.

The revitalization ideas proposed by Paterson and Skelos compliment the Elmont Community Vision Plan developed by the Town of Hempstead in partnership with Nassau County. Both the town's vision plan and the state officials' proposal for the Belmont Park area include the redevelopment of the underutilized parking lots. The town's vision plan for Elmont was created with extensive public participation, including visioning meetings with the citizens of Elmont to determine how the needs of the community could be most effectively met. The local plan includes a hotel and retail stores, among other uses.

"The redevelopment of the Belmont Park area with a hotel, restaurants and quality retail stores reflects the community's desires for Elmont's future," Darcy stated. "Attracting businesses to the area will improve the local economy and help to meet the needs of Elmont's residents by generating jobs and tax revenue," added Ambrosino.

"We are currently working with Belmont Park and the New York Racing Association to beautify the entryways to Elmont at the borders with Queens and Franklin Square," Murray said. "Beautiful landscape and special signs and banners will signal to people that they have arrived in the wonderful and attractive community of Elmont."

Responding to the interests of residents, the town is also working to convert the former Argo Movie Theatre into a state-of-the-art, full-size grocery store at the corner of Hempstead Turnpike and Elmont Road. Adjacent to this site, Hempstead Town has commenced streetscape upgrades, comprised of brick-paved walkways, Victorian streetlights, attractive benches, new plantings and stylized waste receptacles.

Additionally, Hempstead Town's Industrial Development Agency is helping to reenergize Elmont's business community, most recently by facilitating financing to create a two-story, 23,000 square foot equine hospital at Belmont Park.

"The town is also committed to increasing accessibility, traffic flow and pedestrian friendliness along Elmont roadways," said Ambrosino. "We are working with the Department of Transportation to come up with ways to alleviate traffic congestion in the community," Darcy added.

And while proposals for the revitalization of Belmont Park are forthcoming, Hempstead Town is continuing its ongoing effort to beautify and unite the community by partnering with Belmont Park and local community groups for a community clean-up on November 8th, 2008.

"The future of Elmont is bright and we are excited that the Governor and Senator Skelos are committed to Elmont's economic renaissance," concluded Murray. "Together, all levels of government and area residents can create a more vibrant and attractive Elmont."


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