Work On Islanders Belmont Park Arena Paused By COVID-19

Gov. Cuomo Orders Non-Essential Construction To Stop

Brandon Contes
March 27, 2020 - 2:12 pm

Friday morning, New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered all non-essential construction to stop in an effort to get more people to practice social distancing and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Non-essential contruction includes work on Belmont Park Arena, the future home of the New York Islanders. Work continued up until Thursday, Mar. 26, but as of Friday, the live webcam on the Islanders’ website showed no activity. The ban is expected to cover residential and commercial construction, but not essential work related to health care facilities, transit, utilities, public infrastructure, supportive housing, homeless shelters and emergency repairs.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to change rapidly, no time-frame was announced as to when non-essential construction might be able to resume. While the 17,113-seat arena at Belmont Park is planning to open sometime around Sept. 2021, a long layoff could jeopardize their ability to meet that goal.

The NHL’s regular season typically begins in October and if Belmont Park Arena is not ready by the time the Islanders are set to start their 2021-22 schedule, they do have other options. In 2013, the New York Rangers began their season on a nine-game roadtrip while Madison Square Garden completed their $1 billion renovation.

The Islanders are set to play their home schedule during the 2020-21 season at the newly renovated  Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale. The team called Nassau Coliseum home from 1972 to 2015 before relocating to Barclays Center.