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,"
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."