Wednesday, November 14, 2007

From Newsday:

Charles Wang, formerly of Computer Associates and current owner of the NY Islanders, has submitted his revised plan for the development of what is called the Nassau Hub.

"Will its residents embrace a new vision of development that accepts urban scale and density on the promise that it will deliver vibrant, walkable communities where the next generation can afford to live?

Or will they see it as just another attempt to jam too many buildings onto too small a piece of land, with too much traffic and not enough parking?

The hockey team, The Islanders, play in a pretty run down arena called the Nassau Veterans Coliseum. This needs to be replaced, and Wang proposes not just replacing it, but building an entire development around the new coliseum. Some of the pictures and ideas of this "Lighthouse at Long Island" are intriguing, such as the waterways and the promise of "walkability". But the original plans for this area were scaled down after Long Islanders complained of the project "looking like Queens". This is the common complaint of all of us who grew up here, the place is starting to become more like the city - too many buildings, cars, and people and not enough space to put them all. This "Nassau Hub" area already has way too much traffic. I am concerned about this project not having enough parking spaces, and including too many new buildings for conferences and hotels. I have to give them credit however, this project is not just more strip malls and box stores. My preference: scale it down some more - just rebuild the coliseum with extra rinks and waterways, add some nice stores and restaurants for people to go to after events, and leave the place looking like Long Island.

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