Cosmos eye three potential stadium sites, two in NYC, if Belmont bid fails


New York Cosmos COO Erik Stover is opening up about the team’s contingency plans for a soccer specific stadium in the event of a rejection at their proposed Elmont site.

“I truly believe Belmont is going to happen for us.  I don’t have a timeline.  I wish I did.  I wish it was resolved by now. I think we all do. But I do believe it is going to happen,” Stover tells Nick Laveglia and Luis Hernandez of the new Cosmos Podcast, ‘This Is Cosmos Country.’ “We remain very confident.  It is as good a proposal as you could have. Hopefully as we get to the next however many days, a decision comes.”

Despite that belief, the Cosmos aren’t sitting on their hands.  They have begun looking at alternate locations for a potential stadium, which include a pair of locations within the New York City limits.

“We have three sites we like very much right now,” Stover said. “Two are in the five boroughs, one is not, but still in the New York, Metropolitan area.

“Everyday there seems to be another one. I got another email today from a municipality saying they are desperate to have us and want to start conversations. There are options out there.”

Stover would not specify the exact location of the sites, but did concede that they are “in some ways, better than Belmont, in some ways, worse than Belmont.”

The Cosmos submitted a bid in late 2013 to redevelop a portion of land in Elmont, just off of the Cross Island Expressway. A soccer specific stadium serves as the crown jewel of the project, with restaurants, hotels and community amenities sprinkled about the avenue, creating a year long destination community to compliment the Belmont Racetrack.  To further sweeten the proposal, the Cosmos are not asking for any taxpayer subsidies in building their arena.

As the wait continues, Stover is encouraging Cosmos fans to take up their feelings with the ESD to bring a final resolution to the table.

“Continue sending letters to the Empire State Development Corporation. Explain to them we want this, we need this, that it is essential. Let’s not forget the kind of economic impact this will have on the community.  Remind people this will certainly help,” he said.

“We have been doing that all along.  It may seem like things are quiet and nothing is happening but we try to keep people informed as much as we can, building the grassroots support quietly, and there are reasons for that, but any support the fans can give whether sending e-mail or writing letters, is greatly appreciated.”

  • Yom

    I really hope they get Belmont. If only upstate politics weren’t so…what they are.

  • Stone cold Steve Austin 3:16

    Sometimes I don’t know if I should take his words seriously. He sounds like a teenager telling his parents that his innocent but his not.
    If nycfc can’t get a stadium site, why would cosmos have to new sites.
    Unbelievable sir.

  • SOS

    I would have no problem if the stadium gets built in one of the 5 boroughs.

    • Stone cold Steve Austin 3:16

      I think cosmos would do great in queens or Brooklyn. It just depends where nycfc end up.
      I’m not from New York or been there but is there any land for nycfc in the Bronx or in the city.
      Same thing for cosmos, will they go to Brooklyn or queens.
      But I think we are forgetting about red bull. They plan to make a secondary red bull stadium in lower manhattan to spread their marketing, April fools.

    • David

      What if it was Staten Island?

      • SOS

        Right. In one of the 4 boroughs.

  • Kevin

    I’m a season ticket holder from the Jersey shore. I’m almost hoping Belmont doesn’t go through. These rides to Long Island are killing me.

  • Paul D

    Stadiums never bring “economic benefits” to communities. Classic marketing speak from Stover. How’s the Barclays Center actually improving the area? Red Bull Arena? Nada.

    • Prez

      Except for the part where there is barely a community as it stands. I live on the Queens side of the neighborhood where they want to build the stadium, my aunt lives on the Nassau side of the boarder. The east gets the **** end of everything, every other bid is another big box store and mini mall the same stores that undercut the few locally owned businesses here. On top of that every other bid is requesting tax dollars. This is 100% paid by the team with a community center, a park, restaurants, a hotel, a supermarket, the business will force the local gov to open the LIRR station full time (it’s only operational on race days), they wanna build soccer fields all over the east. So as a person that knows people having to travel to the next town over for groceries cause they don’t have a fucking supermarket, please know what you’re talking about before you spew nonsense.

    • Ali is my man

      How about the brand new NJ transit hub being built in Harrison? I guess that’s nothing to do with RB Arena and the surrounding development plans for the area?

      • SOS

        It’s the development of new housing and business’s that is the major reason why the Harrison Path station is being redone. The hopes are that this will get more folks to RB arena as they are struggling to draw large crowds. I doubt that this will happen. Metro*/RB is not even a whisper in sports talk in the NY area.

        • Stone cold Steve Austin 3:16

          I don’t know how many years it will take for red bull to sell but the more i hear about cosmos, the more I think cosmos are playing hard to get with MLS.
          I might be wrong about cosmos, but it’s getting to my last nerve how they play hard ball and plan to pay for all their stadium and land, is that realistic in New York.
          Something has to happen, probably it might take years for red bull to sell and for cosmos to join MLS but you never know with garber.
          If you ask me, will red bull rebrand and cosmos disappear, I say yes.
          Red bull will rebrand and cosmos are digging their grave.
          Cosmos have 2 years, 2 years to walk away from NASL, if not they will be gone for good.

          • Hydrahamster

            What a crazy MLS mark. The Cosmos are not interested in MLS and is loyal to the NASL. The Cosmos turned MLS down. Get over it. Stopping wishing ill will on things because you can’t get your way.

        • Anonymous

          Somewhat true about RB’s lack of media. But read Joe Tollisen’s interview on the subject. Metro/RB has burned bridges w/ the NY media leading to lack of press support. The fickle media turns its back on RB and the current regime is doing little to improve their relationship in the community.

          Actually, they’re clearing house, cutting costs and biding time until sold. Why did Curtis/Marsch get only a one year deal?? Who does that if there’s a long-term plan???

          RB is struggling this year (despite announced increase in tix sales). It was pretty good just a few years back. Don’t look at announced attendance. You need to be there to get the real crowd size and I was there. Tollisen adds that NYC FC has been welcomed w/ open arms by the press. I’ve lived in that area around RBA since the early 80s and the recent transformation in development and infrastructure is fantastic, despite RB’s arrogance (see: tax payments). RB pisses off so many, including it’s own fan base.

          RB’s only major asset is RBA. It’s a gem which will probably be the future home of NYC FC. I doubt that Cosmos will move in to RBA, but they do have roots and history playing in the NJ meadowlands from back in the 70-80s glory days. Stranger things have happened in NJ soccer, but it does look like the Cosmos are setting up for the long run (as are the Blues in the Bronx) while the NJ Reds are short term.

          • Stone cold Steve Austin 3:16

            I don’t see nycfc going to red bull arena, c’mon, let’s be real.
            Why would nycfc play at red bull. Makes no sense unless they buy everything.
            What’s makes more sense is cosmos digging their own grave and someone buying red bull.
            Too bad whoever buy red bull won’t be able to use the united team name since Minneapolis will be the second team to do so.
            You have dc united and Minneapolis united, when it could have been New York empire united.

            • slowleftarm

              The only name stupider than New York Empire United is another team name you once suggested – Chicago Global City.

              • Stone cold Steve Austin 3:16

                ? Excuse me your majesty :)
                Well In soccer every detail counts, not like in the NFL and MLB.
                The stadium location, ownership and the color of the jersey in soccer is very important .
                For example my team in the nfl are the 49ers and they move to Santa Clara but it’s the nfl and they don’t care. Another example, the Atlanta braves are moving out to the suburbs and cowboys play in Arlington. To me in soccer that’s is not acceptable but garber has the last word.

            • Anonymous

              Agreed, NYCFC cannot go to RBA at any point after making their major selling point situating new stadium in 5 boroughs. Would be good to have one new stadium for both Cosmos and NYCFC, would make sense.

      • slowleftarm

        NJ Transit doesn’t have a stop in Harrison (it did at one time but the station closed in 1984). Path does though and the station is finally being brought into the 21st century.

  • Joe

    Once the ‘RB’ and ‘NY’ of the team that plays in Harrison, NJ are replaced, I see brighter days for the club. RedBull is a total turnoff and having New York in a name of a team that plays in NJ is disingenuous (Giants & Jets have long history so can’t compare). With a new ownership group and a rebrand to something like Metro Stars FC, the club will rise again.

    • slowleftarm

      1. MetroStars were so named because the club was owned at the time by Metro Media so it’s just as much a corporate branding exercise as RBNY.
      2. There’s nothing wrong with having NY in the name – RBNY, as well as the Giants and Jets, represent the NY metro area, of which northern New Jersey is certainly a part.

      • Stone cold Steve Austin 3:16

        Do you work for red bull or something. You are so faithful to this team and ownership.
        If you don’t work for this great company, you should definitely look into it.
        You might even end up being their coach or assistant, :).
        My team Houston dynamo has a sucky name and we are owned by the galaxy but at least we got a shiny stadium close to downtown.
        We sometimes go to admit and be honest with society.
        Houston dynamo, dynamo c’mon :(
        The name sucks and we are owned by galaxy. We could have been inter Houston.

        • Ulrich

          The name Dynamo is actually a historic name for many clubs in Eastern Europe.

          As to the name United, as mentioned in an earlier post, typically a club adopts the moniker “United” after two or more smaller clubs, or owners merge, hence uniting them. Neither DC nor (to my knowledge) Minnesota did this, they simply co-opted the name because it has history/moxy (and marketing power) on the world stage of the sport.

          If anything, NYCFC, or the Cosmos, could easily adopt Wanderers or Rovers since both names represent clubs that do not have their own stadium but rather share/lease one from another club/entity. Granted, it may be more apt for the Cosmos since they simply lease from a University that they have no other connection to, whereas NYCFC actually plays on a field owned by their minority owner.

          • Anonymous

            Yeah, teams run by the Soviet and other communist regimes’ intelligence agencies , lol :)

  • Anonymous

    Just call nycfc “city” and rename nyrb metro “united” b/c no one would ever have two teams from the same area called “city” and “united”. Then call united “reds” and city “blues” for short. ;-)

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