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Thread: 2006 Last Summer In Hofstra?

  1. #1
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    Jan 2005
    New York

    2006 Last Summer In Hofstra?

    End of another tradition...Jets look to leave by mid 2007 which may mean next years camp could be last at Hofstra...

    Star Ledger

    Jets elect to bump Hofstra and run to Garden State
    Franchise looking for field position closer to new stadium
    Friday, October 21, 2005
    Star-Ledger Staff
    HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. -- Like a family of four that has outgrown an Upper West Side co-op that is both too small and no longer convenient, the Jets have embarked on a search for a new home in the Garden State.

    While the planned $800 million stadium the Jets and the Giants will share in the Meadowlands won't be ready until at least the 2009 season, the Jets want to be operating in New Jersey much sooner than that, possibly by the middle of 2007. That means moving their training facilities and headquarters from Hofstra University here on Long Island to a yet-to-be- determined spot in New Jersey.

    The Jets are motivated by the prospect of more space and convenience at a very affordable price -- since the state has agreed to buy the land for the complex.

    "The people at Hofstra have been great to us," Terry Bradway, the team's general manager, said of the university where the Jets have camped out since 1975. "But to have an area that you can call your own -- well, that's going to be real good for us.

    "When it takes you 2 1/2 hours to get home after a home game, that can wear on you a bit."

    The search began in earnest last week as Jets President Jay Cross trudged around the old Curtiss- Wright manufacturing plant in Wood-Ridge with Mayor Paul Sarlo, who is also a state senator. Jets executives said the team was impressed with the locale, but the 150-acre site could have some toxic cleanup issues. No one knows how much it would cost or how long it would take to prepare the ground, and that could delay a construction project the Jets want to start as soon as possible.

    In the coming weeks, team officials are expected to visit several other sites in northern New Jersey. They include a parcel near the Allied Junction rail transfer station in Secaucus, a spot near the former military ocean terminal in Bayonne, and the old National Lead site in Sayreville, as well as several other urban settings near the Meadowlands.

    Cross and his associates are going through a process familiar to many New Jersey homeowners -- the visits to various properties, explorations of towns, comparing how one home might measure up against another. Cross is aiming to decide on a site by January.

    The team even has its own real estate agent to show them around -- former Giants' lineman Bart Oates, of JH Cohn, a consulting company.

    "I think I have an understanding of the nuances a facility like this is going to require," said Oates, who entered the real estate game in 1995.

    Wherever the Jets end up, the new home is expected to be a significant upgrade from the old one. At the Jets current headquarters here in Hempstead, the uniforms hang on a series of bars high above the floor, as though it were a dry- cleaning operation short on space.

    During summer practice, 80 rookies dress in a room that looks more appropriate for a high school fencing team. And most of the players live throughout Long Island, which often means a two- or three-hour trek after home games at the Meadowlands Sports Complex.

    Now, the Jets are looking for 20 acres within a 20-mile drive of the Meadowlands, which acting Gov. Richard Codey agreed to acquire for the team when it committed last month to jointly build a stadium with the Giants.

    In return, the state would be able to collect about $10 million in annual income taxes from Jets' players and employees.

    The Jets want a parcel of land that will easily hold a 150,000-square-foot building for offices and weight training, three outdoor fields and a fourth field inside a bubble. With security always a concern, the site has to be easily contained.

    The team also wants to be close to Newark Liberty International Airport, so road trips don't have to be any longer than they already are and prospective free agents can be flown in and out with ease.

    Proximity to a major medical facility is vital, and a diversity of housing within a 25-minute drive is essential.

    "You have your superstars and your core guys who are doing really well," Oates said. "But most of the rest of the guys are making $250,000, which is a lot, but you want affordable accommodations."

    Something else makes the Jets' search unique in an era when every affordably priced house from Montclair to Red Bank seems to have six bidders: The Jets appear to have a degree of leverage, as Sarlo made clear when he aggressively courted the team last week.

    "The NFL has prestige," Sarlo said. "At the end of the day, I think the Jets are a great corporate neighbor."

    Being known as the home of an NFL franchise could add substantially more cachet than another shopping center with a Target, Home Depot or Costco.

    "Real estate today is all about building destinations," Oates said. "There is a branding opportunity here that goes beyond 20 acres of developable land."

    Other real estate veterans, however, said they doubt an NFL training facility would add any value to an area.

    "In 33 years, I've never had anyone call me up and ask to be located close to a stadium, much less a practice field," said David Houston, principal with Colliers Houston, one of the state's oldest realty companies. "Unless the state gets involved, this amount of land is going to be very hard to find."

    Yet the Jets insist there will be other benefits to a town that becomes the team's base of operations, as NFL players are encouraged to become active in their communities.

    Matthew Futterman may be reached at mfutterman@starled or (973) 392-1732.
    Last edited by Buldawg; 10-21-2005 at 08:31 AM.

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  3. #3
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    Huntington, NY
    Quote Originally Posted by Buldawg
    End of another tradition...Jets look to leave by mid 2007 which may mean next years camp could be last at Hofstra...

    Star Ledger

    "When it takes you 2 1/2 hours to get home after a home game, that can wear on you a bit."

    Yeah, no f*cking sh1t!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    New York
    The transformation to New Jersey Jets is nearly complete.

    Where can I mail those "NY: We're Coming Home!" shirts the Jets made not too long ago?


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