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Coliseum redevelopment: How about a straight answer?

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“Coliseum renovations will begin during the summer of 2015, with the building set to re-open by September 2017.”

Don’t worry Coliseum goers. Everything is right where it should be regarding redevelopment of the historic Uniondale arena. Then why have no building permits been filed yet?

What’s the status of the Coliseum’s redevelopment?

According to a Newsday article by Robert Brodsky, published Jan. 16, 2014, “Ratner: Coliseum renovation on schedule,” real estate developer Bruce Ratner’s “plan to revamp the Nassau Coliseum and transform the surrounding land into an entertainment complex is on schedule…”

Oh really?

Newsday also revealed that Ratner “has yet to file a building permit application with the Town of Hempstead…”

Uh oh…the Town Of Hempstead. That’s Supervisor Kate Murray’s territory. The TOH is exactly what prevented the Coliseum from being rebuilt the first time around, under the Light House At Long Island Project.

Now, even though the permit for the Coliseum is a major step towards getting the renovation going, it appears there may be delays. That seems strange, although it is Nassau County, where local politics have pushed away the only professional team on Long Island.

About the proper permit, Ratner is quoted as saying “he expects” to submit it “in a short period of time.”

No other details were provided.

The original plan

Do you recall what Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and Bruce Ratner jointly announced last summer?

On Aug. 16, 2013, reported the new Coliseum is going to host “over 300 events” and have “restaurants, a movie theater, a theater club, bowling alley and a winter outdoor ice rink on the land around the Coliseum…”

Yeah, okay, minus the Islanders, a former Stanley Cup champion and NHL dynasty. That should be easy to match in suburbia.

Recently, when Ratner was asked about occupants at the new Coliseum, “he declined to identify any potential tenants.”

That also seems odd.

So, the next time someone asks how the Coliseum’s redevelopment is going, just refer them to Bruce Ratner. He’ll set them straight, in a roundabout sort of way.


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