Updates on Belmont Park's reconstruction


The $455 million project to reconstruct historic Belmont Park is underway, and will shift the 2024 Belmont Stakes and likely the 2025 Belmont Stakes to Saratoga Race Course.

The New York Racing Association’s ability to secure state approval and funding for the new Belmont Park was made possible, in large measure, by the enthusiastic support from elected officials throughout Long Island and throughout New York state, as well as the local community,” said Patrick McKenna, vice president of communications for the New York Racing Association.

McKenna said that a synthetic race track is currently being installed at Belmont Park. This new track will be the fourth surface at Belmont Park and will allow the venue host thoroughbred racing on a “year-round basis,” according to the racing association.

The second tunnel, which will connect the infield with the grandstand and a tunnel to allow the horses to access the fourth synthetic surface is also underway, McKenna said.

The renovations to the park will generate $1 billion in construction-related economic impact and create 3,700 construction-related jobs. Upon the project’s completion, projected to conclude in 2026, additional racing and non-racing activities at the new Belmont Park will generate $155 million in annual economic output, support 740 new full-time jobs, and produce 10 million in new state and local tax revenue per year.

“It’s a Belmont Park that will be home to year-round racing in the decades to come,” McKenna said.

The reimagined park will bring the return of the Breeders’ World Cup Championships to New York for the first time since 2005. The event’s impact on the local community is approximately $100 million, McKenna said.

The 2022 Breeders’ World Cup Championships, hosted at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky, generated a total economic impact of $82 million according to a study by University of Louisville economics professor Thomas E. Lambert.

While the move of the Belmont Stakes for the 2024 Belmont Stakes and the 2025 Belmont Stakes may affect businesses that see an influx of customers during the race, McKenna said the long-term investments will benefit the Elmont community.

“The long-term benefits gained by the construction of a world-class facility in Elmont will certainly outweigh the near-term impact,” he said. “We have been working closely with our neighbors throughout Elmont and Floral Park for months.”

In 2026, McKenna said the New York Racing Association aims to host the Belmont Stakes at its Elmont home again when construction is completed.

“The construction of the new Belmont Park is the most significant racetrack construction project in more than 50 years,” McKenna said. “It will create billions of dollars in economic impact, both in the near term and long term, create important jobs for New Yorkers, and secure the future of thoroughbred racing downstate for generations to come.”