Mangano, officials cut ribbon at new Nassau Coliseum

Mangano, officials cut ribbon at new Nassau Coliseum

Nassau Coliseum, one of Long Island’s entertainment jewels, is back in business.

Following a 20-month-long, $165 million renovation, local politicians, business leaders and the Coliseum’s management celebrated the opening of the redesigned venue with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday.

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano, along with other county politicians and Bruce Ratner, the executive chairman of Forest City Ratner Companies, the developer of the venture, and executives and developers cut the ribbon of Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, ushering in a new generation of sports, music and entertainment.

Following the ribbon-cutting, Mangano and others spoke at a news conference on the arena’s floor, where he said, “This is a historic day in Nassau County.”

“My administration is proud to have partnered with Nassau Events Center to jump-start previous efforts to transform the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum into a world-class venue,” Mangano said. “Together, we delivered a modern venue – at no cost to taxpayers – that makes all Long Islanders proud.”

Billy Joel will kick off the first night of entertainment on Wednesday, 45 years after Three Dog Night opened the original venue in 1972.

“Our goal was to create a space that reflected the tremendous sense of place that permeates Long Island, from the look of the building, to the taste of the food,” Ratner said. “Our talented architectural and development team have succeeded beyond our dreams, creating a venue that is visually striking and wonderfully comfortable. We’re excited about the opening and look forward to the ongoing development of this entertainment destination.”

The arena’s exterior is enclosed with 4,700 aluminum fins, with the design paying homage to the area’s history — a dedication to the Spirit of St. Louis, the plane flown by Charles Lindbergh from a Long Island airport on the first trans-Atlantic flight.

The venue’s 416,000-foot interior includes a redesigned main entrance, new seating, improved circulation, revamped bathrooms and concession stands and new space for VIP experiences.

It also includes a new Blue Boom Beer Garden.

The Coliseum’s management is also touting the arena’s improved fan experience with free high-speed Wi-Fi, phone service for all major carriers and a high-definition LED scoreboard.

“I am beyond proud to say we have collectively succeeded in delivering to Long Island the venue it has long deserved,” Brett Yormark, CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, said. “We have replicated the best aspects of Barclays Center, like its renowned customer service and culinary program, and infused it with the spirit of Long Island. The combination has yielded a premier venue with a first-class experience that will become a vital part of the fabric of the community.”

According to a news release, 1,500 employees have been hired to work at the Coliseum.

“I’m happy for our residents to have the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum back open,”  Kevan Abrahams, Democratic leader of the county Legislature, said. “The Coliseum is an important institution on Long Island and a testimony to the all-union workforce that built it in the memory of the local veterans it remembers in its name.”

The new Coliseum will hold up to 16,000 people for concerts, 14,500 people for basketball games and MMA and boxing events, 13,900 for hockey games and 4,500 for theater events.

The Coliseum will also host the Long Island Nets, the NBA Developmental League affiliate of the Brooklyn Nets. Lower level nonpremium season tickets start at $14 per ticket and upper level season tickets start at $10 for the 2017-18 season.

On July 22, the Coliseum will feature Long Island’s first UFC event, which will air on Fox.

Following Billy Joel on Wednesday, Stevie Nicks will take the stage at the Coliseum on Thursday. She will be followed by Syosset native Idina Menzel on Friday, Marc Anthony on Sunday and WWW Monday Night Raw on Monday.

Bruno Mars will perform on Oct. 5.

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