Monday, July 12, 2010

Kate Murray's Lighthouse Scale-Down Press Release

This was too good to keep from all of you...

I'll let the fur fly tonight, but in the meantime, check out Kate Murray's press release announcing the Lighthouse scale down.  This is the unedited release.  Have fun!

Murray and Goosby Produce Alternate Development Zone For Lighthouse Site

July 12, 2010

Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray and Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby, along with Council Members Anthony Santino, Angie Cullin, Gary Hudes and James Darcy, Town Clerk Mark Bonilla and Receiver of Taxes Don Clavin, released details of a new development zone for the 77 acres of property surrounding the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. The new zoning district crafted by the town will be presented as an alternative to the Lighthouse Project in an environmental report (Final Environmental Impact Statement [FEIS]). The alternate zone would be considered by the town board at a public hearing. The new zone facilitates a vibrant mixed-use development that is sustainable and would complement the suburban character of surrounding communities.

"We are taking proactive steps that can bring about meaningful development, along with all of the associated benefits, to the hub of Nassau County," stated Murray. "Creating a zone that encourages reasonable development is key to supporting our tax base, offering construction and long term jobs, stimulating the region's economy and facilitating a renovated Coliseum which would help keep the Islanders hockey team here where they belong."

"Developing an alternative zone which will allow development that fits on the property surrounding the Coliseum was a priority for the town," said Goosby. "This zone meets that objective and can be supported by local upgraded roadways as well as other infrastructure components."

The proposed alternative zone provides for 5.4 million square feet of construction (includes all buildings and parking structures) comprised of many of the same types of development that were sought by the Lighthouse Group. At the same time, the zone scales back the density contemplated under the Lighthouse plan. Among the many types of development that will be permitted in the newly created zone are convention facilities, hotels, retail, restaurants, offices, residential units, entertainment uses and a refurbished Coliseum.

Additionally, the town-crafted alternative zone embraces smart growth principles such as mixed-use structures, roadways and pedestrian areas that encourage walking and bicycling, as well as "green technologies" in building construction. Mixed-use development accommodated under the new zone could include retail and/or office structures with homes above those facilities, all within the same buildings. Roadways that incorporate bicycle lanes, street furniture along pedestrian walkways, as well as street side cutouts for parallel parking, will all combine to create a walkable community and a genuine destination for people who are looking for an exciting location to live, work and enjoy recreational activities. Other smart growth elements considered in the zone include "shared parking" that helps optimize the level of development and integrated parking facilities that combine the parking structures and retail/offices.

The new zone alternative provides for up to 500 new homes to be developed. Those housing units will be required to include affordable and next generation/workforce homes.

The density and building heights accommodated in the town's zoning alternative are substantial and sustainable. In fact, the density proposed would be the most intense zoning in the township. The Floor Area Ratio (FAR [the ratio of total square footage of construction as it relates to the square footage of land upon which it is built]) for the proposed zone is 1.6. By contrast, the FAR for the RXR Towers is 0.89 and the Omni Building totals 0.56. The Marriott Hotel has an FAR of 0.92. Moreover, the new zone's development total of 5.4 million square feet contrasts with an estimated 10-13.5 million square feet of development under the Lighthouse proposal.

The maximum building height contemplated under the town's zone is 100 feet or nine stories and applies to hotels. Mixed use, office and most other structures would be capped at four stories. Exclusively residential buildings would be restricted to three stories.

Town officials emphasized that the alternate zone is flexible in that it does not dictate which specific types of development prescribed in the zone must be sited on the individual parcels that make up the 77 acres around the Coliseum. The zone only requires that two of the permitted uses, other than the Coliseum, be included in the developer's proposal for each parcel.

Hempstead Town's zoning alternative also provides for traffic mitigation. The mitigation includes roadways within the Coliseum area which would redistribute traffic, addressing the burdens that would otherwise be created by a development of this significance. The plan also contemplates "smart" traffic signals and a reconfigured interchange at the intersection of Meadowbrook Parkway and Hempstead Turnpike.

"The Town of Hempstead has been working hard to facilitate reasonable development at the site surrounding the Nassau Coliseum," concluded Murray. "We committed to 'jump starting' a stalled development process, promised to provide for reasonable development that is progressive, and we have been clear that we would only permit a zone that can be sustained by the environment and local infrastructure. We've produced a zone that is true to those goals. What's more, making sure that the zone would be consistent with the suburban character of our area, support our tax base, stimulate the economy, facilitate the renovation of the Coliseum and help keep the Islanders hockey team here have also been key determinants in producing this alternative."


  1. Spin Dring at its finest....They pass over the housing in one sentence when thats a major part of the plan

  2. Kate Murray and her minions (and yes I do mean minions) at the TOH should all go play in traffic. That whole press release reeked of B.S.

  3. This proposal makes some sense, but because C. Wang didn't get it done 'his way' he will pick up & leave; good, his plan was about making him a billionaire several times over, this plan will still make him the $$ & at the same time not urbanize the surrounding established communities. He just used the team as a pawn, & now he will take his toys & leave, just like he did in Plainview.

  4. I think Kate Murray has just doomed the future of Nassau County!!!!

  5. NYI Fan, so, after buying the team, losing at least $70 million, you want him to personally finance a new/refurbished arena (on his dime), and not care about making some of it back? You're on this site, please read the old article about the economics of this before spouting such a silly and untenable position. It's one thing to hear about the nonsensical "urbanize the established communities" bs, but to STILL here nonsense about financial viability is beyond understanding. This plan will NOT MAKE HIM THE $$ as you put it..Murray even admitted not considering the economic viability. So, you plan how someone else will spend millions without considering economic viability? Unbelievable...and stupid!! You think if she REALLY wanted this to happen, she wouldn't consider economics? Of course not!! All she wants is cover for her simple minded NIMBY's to keep voting for her, while shielding herself for the inevitable, when CW moves to Queens...

  6. Nick, can't wait to read your response to this nonsense from John Candy's twin sister. I love how someone on here stated that "this plan will still make him the $$ & at the same time not urbanize the surrounding established communities." Wait, NOT URBANIZE the surrounding established communities?!?!? What "communities" are you referring to? Garden City? They should gut HALF of Garden City. And let's be realistic, friends. Making the Lighthouse a reality AS IS wouldn't make the surrounding communities, the Town of Hempstead or Nassau County an urban area. It would make the land it SITS ON, and ONLY THAT LAND, a beautiful DESTINATION as opposed to whatever you want to name the hellhole that it is now. Besides, no one expected 100% of it to get approved. We DID expect compromise.

    Not a slap in the face. But, then again, this could all be negotiation so that both sides "settle" on 75%. Let's hope.

    Nick, it's all yours.

    -Big Van Vader

  7. If by, "the suburban character of our area," she means tons of sprawl in the area, then yes this plan is consistent with the suburban character of our area. I don't know why some Long Islanders think that a project design that basically call for even more strip malls is part of the Long Island "suburban character" or is at all desirable. I hate to say it, but the sprawl is a form of urbanization, and furthermore what has been proposed here is a mini version of what exists in large parts of the Bronx. If you think about it like that, then why fight the "urbanization" of Long Island? Do the detractors of the Lighthouse believe that because the TOH calls itself a "Town" that isn't a city? The kind of development proposed by the Lighthouse is coming to the Island eventually, and this was a chance for the TOH and Long Islanders to take the bull by the horns and do it right.

  8. Do you really think Wang is interested in the team as anything other than a way to develop this area? When he first bought the Isles, he bought into getting high priced players & it didn't work out. He then got rid of those who advised him & now we have the Isles team via Charles Wang, or, a minor league team using this LH as a weapon, poor CW, can't get his lighthouse.

  9. Mark Twain was right....and NYI Fan and Anon (4:41) proved it. You can't make someone understand something if something depends on their not understanding it.

    I have proved, painstakingly, for 18 freaking months, that this project wasn't some rich guy's fantasy, but a needed way to make back the money spent on the arena. Yet you continue to push the ridiculous hallucination that this project exists because Wang decided he wants his way.

    We can debate the merits of the project all you want, but guys, come on. If you can't accept this basic fact despite all the evidence everywhere that backs it up, I don't know what to say to you.

  10. I apologized if my tone sounded off there, but I'm just so damn exasperated...I say this over and over again and people still decide I'm not telling the truth, just because they feel it's not true. It's infuriating, it really is.

  11. I saw part of Murray's pitch and got a better look at the overhead plan and it is so freaking obvious how cheap and piecemeal and effortless their plan is.

  12. NICK, said "You can't make someone understand something if something depends on their not understanding it"...

    soooo true. we're doomed for mediocrity

  13. Isles should go to Queens ASAP. Mangano teaming up with Wang (as of today) should not go on. D'Amato is waiting in the wings trying to cash in. It's about time Wang said he is taking the team to Queens. At least political powers in Queens seem to want them. With Isles and Mets talking and politicians wanting them, I think Isles getting a big piece of WP is definitely possible. I believe the reason why Wang did not submit an RFQ was because Mets were submitting one and 28 other developers would have been up in arms if 2 developers of RFQ decided to join forces.

  14. Mediocrity is an improvement, yes?

  15. I don't if I missed it but in the fat one's press confernce not once did she mention the Islanders. And the bottom line is NVMC or whatever it may end up being called (Kate Murray big fat empty arena), cause W/O the isles the TOH has NOTHING. So Miss Murray I ask you why no mention of the main tenant in all of this.

  16. I like how Citi Field, New Yankee Stadium and the new Giants Stadium were all built with dirty money, primarily paid for with taxpayers money. Yet here's a plan in which the owner of the team will pay for his own development as long as he has a way to make back money spent and people are complaining.

  17. TheBard - I don't get it. There is a certain group of people who only see what they want to see.

    We can debate whether this is a good project for Long Island until we're all blue in the face, and everyone is entitled to their opinion on that. But again, you are not entitled to your own facts. It is a fact that the development exists to raise money for the arena construction, not to pad Charles Wang's ego.

  18. Nick,
    I see what put you in a Twain-like mood today. You make your opinion known as a Lighthouse proponent and you get so much NIMBY response on your own blog. I guess that is what a blog is designed for, right.

    You do however make a valid point stating that when the response is akin to “Wanger wants to line is own pockets….blah blah blah) , people aren’t looking a the whole picture.

    Is Charlie in this to make money? Of course he is, what developer isn’t? I am sure the developer of the Tanger Outlet in Deer Park has made a pretty penny, but I digress.
    I am, of course, looking forward to your rebuttal to Ms. Murray’s slap-in-the-face of Long Island. However the pressing question is, where do we go from here.

    I am hopeful that Charlie will have a quick formalization of his rejection to a development that looks like it is out of the “Sims” game, so the he (we?) can move on and try to get the Islanders’ arena question resolved post haste, but there is the bigger picture to discern.
    What about Long Island? I am saddened to see that the Lighthouse has apparently failed. There is a larger concern. Will anyone want to have any sort of development on Long Island after the very public battle over the Lighthouse over the last seven years?!? I know I have voiced this concern to you many times, but what is Ms. Murray’s answer to this question?


  19. I cannot believe that people out there still think that Wang wants to develop the area for his own personal gain. I also cannot believe that people think that Wang buying this team was a bad thing. Wang saved this team. It is cut and dry. For the first few years he lost $20 million of his own money per year. The whole point of developing the surrounding area is to make the Islanders self-sustainable. They organization does not make enough money to compete in this league. They do not have the lucrative deal with Sportschannel. They have to pay SMG and Nassau tremendous amounts of their profits.

    Wang simply cannot dip into his pocket and pay $20 million per year to keep the team competitive.

    If Wang did not buy the Islanders, they would be gone already.

  20. He saved the team, lost a lot of money doing it, and his reward is a big F-U from John Candy's twin and attacks by some ungrateful Islander fans. I don't get how some people think it's OK for him to lose so much money and not have the right to get it back. And HE SAVED THE TEAM... no one else wanted to buy it.

  21. Even though Mangano has offered Wang a seemingly substantial deal that includes a casino and a new arena, I really hope that wang does not go for it. Reason No 1: Al D'Amato is waiting in the wings to cash in. The current rift between Murray and Mangano may be a mirage as they're in the same political party.

  22. i don't think she's in on this. this whole casino thing blew her news out of the water... she thought she was a big shot but she's not and everyone's talking casino/mangano/wang

  23. Its a sad state of affairs when one of Long Islands most successful resident wants to build something like the LHP and fund it on his own, a project that would’ve been a catalyst for economic turn around, gets shot down by a fat selfish pig...Instead the selfish scoundrels in the ToH have made it so it cant happen so now we must try and settle for a necessary evil with a casino that enables an addictive habit that can ruin lives, sad, sad, sad...
    If this is what will save the Isles then, I say “do it”!!!Call me a selfish pr*** if you want but I supported the LHP at the rallys, wrote letters, called Murray and spoke to her people, like many of you, but all we got was spit in our faces by Kate Murray and her cronies…BUILD THE CASINO!!!!LETS GO ISLANDERS!!!!

  24. This is what happens when you don't put in a Krispy Kreme where Kate wants it !

  25. For anyone who believes that the TOH proposal is fair; please think about this: This proposal allows for less development than already exists in many other parts of Nassau County including parts of the TOH.

    I hope you don't think it is unfair for any business entity who is raising funding themselves to think that they should be able to do at least as much as what already exists elsewhere.

    This fact alone makes the TOH proposal truly insulting.