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Sands maps its plans for the Nassau Hub - Newsday

The best-laid plans of dice and men

The conceptual master plan that Las Vegas Sands has submitted to Hempstead Town sheds some additional light on the casino company’s plans for the Nassau Hub in Uniondale.

The plan, which is subject to change, includes a site map that highlights both the land around Nassau Coliseum and the existing Long Island Marriott property. It features three parking garages along the edges of the property — one on Hempstead Turnpike, one on Earle Ovington Boulevard and one on Charles Lindbergh Boulevard. Two of those garages are placed around the existing Memorial Sloan Kettering cancer center space.

At the site map’s center is a large space labeled “Gaming-Dining-Retail.” That space includes an outline of the Coliseum itself. Is that an indication Sands is planning to leave the arena in place, or even use it within its design? Perhaps, although it’s still unclear how exactly that would work. In its attached environmental assessment, Sands notes the “reuse of portions of the existing Coliseum building” as an element of its environmental sustainability plans, which also include electric HVAC systems, water conservation, the use of natural light and more.

Sands has placed hotel towers on either side of the arena space. And splitting the gaming and retail space is a pool and spa area connecting the two towers.

To the south of the gaming, dining and retail space is Sands’ planned entertainment venue.

On the west edge of the Hub is a space marked M.I.C.E. That’s not a space for Mickey and Minnie; instead, it stands for Meeting, Incentive, Conference & Exhibition, a term often used in business travel and hospitality industries that encompasses everything from business meetings and travel rewards for employees and regular customers to larger conferences and trade shows.

The conceptual plan also includes significant sections of green space, along with roads cutting through the property.

Also labeled on the plan: the existing Marriott hotel, and all of the parking around it. It’s unclear whether Sands will use the hotel as is, renovate it, or tear it down and build something new.

Sands’ initial environmental assessment, also included in its submission to the town, involved a questionnaire of sorts that Sands had to complete, along with several attachments. Within it, Sands says it anticipates its effort would be a two-phase project, with the estimated completion of the first phase in 2025 and completion of the second phase in 2029.

“Phases are dependent upon approval of gaming license and zoning and land use approvals,” Sands wrote.

The Sands submission to the town, which has zoning authority over the Hub property, comes as the state licensing process slowly moves along. Every applicant will need approvals from the appropriate zoning authority and from a Community Advisory Committee, a group of local residents selected by elected officials. For every applicant, those approvals will be required before the state even considers its license application.

— Randi F. Marshall

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