NY Governor Hochul Provides Belmont Park Update

A rendering of the updated Belmont Park | courtesy of Populous

Edited Press Release

New York Governor Kathy Hochul provided a project timeline and additional updates Monday on the construction of new racing facilities at Belmont Park. The New York Racing Association, which will oversee construction, also released a series of architectural renderings to bring the project's vision to life. Expected to be completed in late 2026, the multi-year project to build a new Belmont Park will generate $1 billion in construction-related economic impact and create 3,700 construction-related jobs. Following the return of thoroughbred racing to Belmont in 2026, additional racing and non-racing activities at the new facility will generate $155 million in annual economic output and produce $10 million in new state and local tax revenue per year.

“The redevelopment of Belmont Park is a critical investment in one of New York's most historic sporting venues,” said Governor Hochul. “The new facility will support year-round racing, thousands of new jobs for Long Islanders and provide an enhanced experience for customers attending the iconic Belmont Stakes for generations to come.”

The demolition of the current Belmont Park grandstand/clubhouse is expected to begin in March and continue through early July with the new building beginning to take shape in early 2025.

NYRA has developed a project plan that will allow for the Belmont S. to return to Belmont Park in June of 2026 prior to the full opening of the new building, which is scheduled for September of 2026. Although a venue for the 2026 Breeders' Cup World Championships has yet to be determined, the new Belmont Park will be complete and ready to host the 2026 Breeders' Cup should the opportunity arise. The Breeders' Cup has announced its commitment to add Belmont to the rotation of host venues following NYRA's modernization of the facility.

NYRA will also make further investments to improve the quality of life in the backstretch community, including:

–Improvements to the on-site medical facility

–Installing a modern Blue Light security system

–Upgrading the Recreation Hall and Track Kitchen facilities

–Renovating the on-site Gymnasium

–Implementing new flood mitigation strategies

–Ensuring access to reliable Wi-Fi

–Replacing fencing throughout the backstretch

–Improving multi-modal travel through constructing bicycle storage sheds

–Assess the feasibility of subsidized assistant trainer efficiency apartments

While the new Belmont Park will have the same 50,000-person capacity as the existing venue, the layout of seats, suites, and standing spaces has been adjusted to accommodate flexible seasonal attendance. The addition of a winterized building paired with new racing surfaces and a synthetic track will result in a facility suitable to host thoroughbred racing on a year-round basis. As required by the 2024 Enacted Budget, NYRA will consolidate all downstate racing and training activities at the new Belmont Park to unlock 110 acres of New York State-owned land at Aqueduct Racetrack for development opportunities.

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