This is not exactly news, although select politicians and developers will want it to be news. But it's summer, so should you be in a happier place and hear something about this in passing, here you go:
Newsday reports [sub.] that Monday, "Nassau County is expected Monday to release a Request for Qualifications seeking a 'master developer' for the Nassau Hub property. The winning developer would be required to 'immediately begin negotiations' with the Islanders and the arena's management, Pennsylvania-based SMG, the RFQ is expected to say."
As has been the pattern since the referendum failed last Aug. 1, the Islanders themselves aren't issuing comment nor tipping their hand toward the latest scheme, which looks a whole lot like the older schemes that have gone nowhere thanks to an untenable conflict between the County, Town, would-be developers who want their piece, and the man who owns the sports team everyone pretends they want to keep.
The redevelopment has been at a logjam between what the present tenant is willing to pay and the actual costs to construct a new sports-entertainment arena to host professional sports as well as concerts, the circus and other family-fun entertainment.
In an effort to break the logjam and spark development, Nassau County issued a Request-For-Qualifications (RFQ) to select a Master Developer for the property. The Master Developer will be charged with bridging the gap between the dollars necessary to construct a new arena and the rent a sports team should realistically pay to play in the arena. The Master Developer will bridge the gap by pursuing mixed-use opportunities to assist in offsetting the costs to construct a new arena.
Yeah, you could say there have been logjams.
As for the aforementioned gap, I'm not really sure how a developer bridges that or how owner Charles Wang should play along because pro sports is a rather insane business unless you own the whole thing: Finding a "realistic rent" and dealing further with SMG sounds like more of the same.
Newsday has the latest RFQ seeking "convention space, a biotech park, retail and housing" and a parking garage, all of which along with Islanders' rent payments would presumably help a dream developer recoup the costs of building the new areener.
Also in the Newsday write-up, the usual politicians and would-be developers and people seeking "a better Long Island" are quoted saying the usual things. There is a pretty funny line from County Executive Ed Mangano about it being time to "end the island of no and go forward with the island of yes."
No word from Friend of Suburban Tranquility Kate Murray, but you can imagine.
Lather, rinse, repeat.