- New York real estate developer RXR Realty and BSE Global, which operates NYCB LIVE/Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York, announced a development agreement, according to Newsday, for a $1.5 billion mixed-use development on 72 acres around the venue. The property, commonly referred to as the Nassau Hub, is last major piece of undeveloped land in Nassau County.
- The companies reportedly responded to a request for expressions of interest (RFEI) with a plan to build 500 residences, 600,000 square feet of offices and biotech research space, 200,000 square feet of "experiential retail," two parking garages, bus service to two Long Island Railroad stations and two pedestrian bridges connecting to other nearby RXR properties. BSE Global CEO Brett Yormark told Newsday that the "real vision for the Hub is to make it "destinational" and that the project is about creating a "live, work, play" environment.
- The plan is in line with the Town of Hempstead's zoning requirements — regulations that have killed at least one previous attempt to develop the property — and Nassau County officials are expected to seek legislative approval for the project as early as October. The county, which owns the Coliseum and leases it to BSE, said they are also talking to Mount Sinai Health Network to build a $100 million medical research facility on the Hub property.
Experience- and destination-based shopping is one of the industry trends that retailers hope will get people to eschew some of the convenience of online shopping in favor of a visit to one of their brick-and-mortar locations.
Triple Five Group is a leader in this area with three American Dream mega-mall properties — one established in Minneapolis, one in New Jersey readying for a spring opening and another trying to navigate the approval process in Miami. With features like water parks, indoor ski slopes, amusement parks, and plenty of food and other entertainment options, American Dream retailers benefit from visitors who plan entire trips around these malls. In fact, when describing its Miami project, Triple Five said the company anticipated that American Dream would rival Disney World in the number of tourists it would attract each year.
While construction of a major project like one of the American Dream malls keeps contractors busy for years, smaller jobs can also be a boon for companies that specialize in renovations or smaller amusement-based projects. For example, developers of Ponce City Market in Atlanta built an amusement park on the roof of a former Sears building. And chains like Whole Foods are creating gathering places inside their stores for customers who want to socialize during a shopping trip.