Saturday, December 12, 2009

Darkness on the Edge of Town?

The Lighthouse bannersImage via Wikipedia
While I was out during the day, my friend BD Gallof broke an additional bit of news on Hockey Independent that could signal something very bad for the Lighthouse Project: according to a source, the Lighthouse has once again stopped payments to F.P. Clark, the Town of Hempstead's environmental consultants.

This comes at an interesting time in the process, as BD pointed out:
  1. There seem to be massive disagreements over the size and scope of the Lighthouse Project, with many close to Charles Wang whispering about a 10% reduction to placate the Town of Hempstead's objections.  Some close to the Town are floating numbers more like 30-35% - that's a major difference.
  2. The sides have not met since Election Day.
  3. As I reported yesterday (in a world exclusive), many powerful interests connected to large real estate developers have been moving money to incoming County Executive Ed Mangano since Election Day.
  4. As a certain commenter on this blog illustrates, stories about Brooklyn are everywhere.
This is the first time I have genuinely allowed myself to consider a bit of news disturbing.  If it is true, then the Lighthouse Project may be facing a major risk.   The dithering and excuse-making from the Town and County have finally created a situation where the project appears to hang in the balance.

I'm not talking about hockey when I say this - if this project does not succeed, it will be a truly sad day for Long Island, and we, the taxpayers, will be left with nothing more than a rotting pit.

I for one hope it does not come to that, and I will report anything new that I hear.

Please share your thoughts in comments. Petition. Email Me. Follow me on Twitter. Become a fan on Facebook.
Reblog this post [with Zemanta]


  1. Nick, you have got to wonder.....

    When will Wang come out publicly and say, "We're done." ?

    Don't you think, between the BOTH of them, (Rechler & Wang) that they would be able to figure out whats really going on here? These are EXPERIENCED real estate guys who have dealt with TOH and the like countless times. They HAVE to know what the real deal is by now.

    If Mangano and Murray pander to these other real estate developers and lose the Islanders, they should be impeached. (If that's possible)

    They have BOTH said in the past that "development IS coming to that area". Maybe that was their way of saying, "What WE want to put up, will be put up."

    The Lighthouse should have been in year THREE of development by now. That is to say, if we weren't dealing with corrupt politicians. And make no mistake,that's what these jokers are. Murray, Mangano, etc..

    The blackout is puzzling. I guess they are waiting to see where the negotiation takes them. 30-35% to 10%? Meet at 20% and call it a day. At this point most Isles fans have become jaded and alot believe this is NEVER getting done. It's just gone on waaaay too long.

    They look how long the other teams in the metro area took to get new buildings and say, "What the %$#%!". The Devils got a building, seemingly overnight. Shows you how far Nassau County and Long Island in general has fallen into this "Cant Do" mentality.

    Part of me says F it all and move this team to Vegas so I can have no regrets about leaving this backward area in a few years.

    Damn, I'm angry.

    Enough is enough and it's time for a change.

    -Big Van Vader

  2. Nick,
    Do you think this is it? As an Islanders fan I have no issue with them in Queens or Brooklyn as I think this is better for the franchise in the long run but how can the TOH let something as unique and vital to LI just die like this. This is the very reason why young people are moving to NYC or out of state from LI. The area and the politicians just don't keep up with the times and the rest of the country!


  3. Mike, I genuinely don't know. This is what I know right now:

    One source (who was familiar with the Town of Hempstead's thinking) told BD that the Lighthouse stopped paying FP Clark.

    Brooklyn is moving forward, but there is fierce opposition with outstanding lawsuits.

    Reports have said 29 developers filed preliminary bids for Willets Point in Queens.

    This could be a game of brinkmanship, or it could be the beginning of the end, something that would be terrible for Nassau County. From a hockey perspective, I've never opposed Brooklyn or Queens; I've merely tried to be realistic, as opposed to others in the blog world that are not getting the whole story.

    All I know is that we need answers, and we need them soon.

  4. What a shame.

    All the politicians in this country are a joke...not just those located on Long Island.

    As a Brooklynite-move the team to Queens or Brooklyn. Please dnt leave the area.

    The funny thing about this is...If I remember correctly the lease is up 2015. At that time this young team could be a very good team. So a team with very good potential, with a great history...could be moving. Unbelieveable.
    Go Isles. If Wang reads this...dnt give in to those ignorant politicians.

  5. Nick,
    Thanks for your updates. Any word if Wang and Rechler put in a bid at Willets Point?

  6. We don't know. The Lighthouse is still on media blackout, and the city has not released the identities of the 29 bidders.

  7. i think it is over for the LH and the team is coming to brooklyn. the opposition to the AY is dwindling and going by the wayside with time and with every legal ruling to date going ratner's way. the bonds he needs to sell by year's end are out there and are expected to move fast. only a bombshell regarding mikhail prokhorov, preventing his approval for entry into the nba could be a serious problem, and david stern's expertise and proclivity for papering things over when big dough is at stake makes that unlikely. the silence from the wang/reck camp is deafening and i think only the forum and timing of a pronouncement from them is in question. there are no saints in this morass, but as someone up there intimated, this result will happen because the gangsters and their remnants that have run LI for half a century or more were still able to muster just enough influence to prevent others from building and creating independently, without the old guard getting their piece of the pie. as they always have. i have no direct or first hand knowledge of the various machinations in this, and i'm sure others see it all differently and may be right, but everything i see and know tells me the islanders are coming to the borough, where i am sure they will flourish again.

  8. Hey Nick,

    Been a while since I've written here but I just have a few observations before I do my last second cramming for finals. Right now the situation does appear to be critical but I would say we do not have to get on the ledge just yet. IMHO right now the Lighthouse is going to take a wait-and-see approach and wait until Mr. Mangano takes office and see what happens. Mr. Mangano was not nearly as staunch of an advocate for the project as Suozzi was but, he still was a supporter of the project. Ultimately, like you have said several times this project WILL get done. It will not look the same as it does now nor will it be as small as the TOH wants it to be. Negotiations will begin again probably upon Mangano taking office and an 11th hour deal will get this project done. Right now IMHO its just all gamesmenship and both sides are trying to gain the upper hand in negotiations. I will be shocked and dissapointed if this project fails as it may represent a last chance for young professionals like myself to live on the island I call home.

  9. It's all over bu the shouting...not happening in Nassau County...Bklyn? Doubt it..Queens, we'll see, maybe. Or, most likely in my opinion, someone from outside (Quebec City???) buys the team and brings it to greener pastures. CW will take the best offer and run. And, I don't blame him one bit!! Watching what happens next in Nassau County will be painfully funny.

  10. Jimmy - good luck on your finals, my friend.

    I'm not ready to sound the alarm, I'm just very concerned about this recent development, which could mean many different things, including posturing. I don't think it's all over, but I do think there's a solid reason we're hearing much about Brooklyn (expect that today and a little biographical post about me tomorrow - which I should've done a long time ago).

  11. OMG...I've been trying to enjoy the season with a positive attitude that something will get done...While watching the games, all season long, Ive blocked the idea from my mind that the team will always be here but this intel doesn't heed well...Sorry, Nick, I am talking about hockey because I just cant fathom what it would be like with my favorite team gone....I might just go postal!!!!JK

  12. Guys, it is over. Forget about the Lighthouse project, I think we all need to really start supporting Brooklyn, Queens or Suffolk. I just hope Wang doesn't sell the team. The TOH leadership is an embarassment. Hopefully they pay for this down the road.