Nassau Coliseum to get new lease of life

Developers are planning to rebuild Long Island-based Nassau Coliseum and give it a new lease of life.

A coalition of entertainment operators are looking to provide the building with a new design that would elevate its status as an entertainment hub. Those involved in the project would be Legends (co-owned by Yankees and Dallas Cowboys), Live Nation, and Jay’s Roc Nation, among others.

The Coliseum’s anchor tenant, the New York Islanders, is moving out from the building and a group of sports-savvy real estate developers is hoping to restore the Coliseum. The sagging 41-year-old Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum would soon be identified for renovation.

As of now, there are two builders who are hoping to clinch a deal and build on the dilapidated structure. While one wants to build within the existing framwork, another wants to build after dismantling the existing structure.

As per new designs, the new interior of the revamped structure would resemble the interior of ‘Star Trek’s’ USS Enterprise.

The first developer, Forest City Ratner Companies, has assembled a team of world-class event operators and designers. It is led by executive chairman Bruce Ratner and Brett Yormark, the CEO of the Nets and Barclays Center.

There are plans to reduce seating capacity from 17,500 to around 13,000 and include a House of Blues-style performance concept. The site could then be used as a major international music venue. There are also plans for a food bazaar and options for fine dining, a 2,500-seat amphitheater, a 2,000-seat Live Nation-type House of Blues concept and a 50,000-square-foot movie theatre.

The total development cost would come to about USD229m.

A developer involved in the project said, ‘Live events are the future of how we will get together as people. The experience has to be unforgettable. Only two major arenas have been built in New York City in the last half a century – Barclays and MSG. We know how to get this done. This will be the kind of arena that people walk into and say, ‘Wow,’ the kind of place where the people of Long Island want to come and the best acts in the world play.’