SBD/May 13, 2013/Facilities

NFL Giants, Jets Leery Of Proposed American Dream Expansion In Meadowlands

American Dream could create gameday traffic issues around nearby Metlife Stadium
The American Dream retail and entertainment complex in the Meadowlands is “getting yet another makeover, sparking new concerns” by the NFL Giants and Jets “over the scope of the controversial project,” according to Ted Sherman of the Newark STAR-LEDGER. The “proposed addition, which has not yet been made public, would involve the construction of a massive, multilevel bridge with additional retail space linking the existing complex with a planned water park and amusement area.” Canada-based development company Triple Five officials “would not comment about their plans or the proposed bridge -- citing ongoing negotiations” with the Giants and Jets. The teams “went to court last summer after the proposed amusement area was added to the project last year, claiming it would create game-day gridlock at nearby MetLife Stadium.” New Jersey-based PR firm Evergreen Partners President Karen Kessler, who is handling PR for the teams in the project, said that the original proposal “called for a relatively small walkway from the complex to the amusement parks.” She added, “This very large proposed structure, to be suspended over a four-lane roadway, bears no relation to the originally proposed small pedestrian bridge and would need to be carefully analyzed for its impact on the site, traffic and congestion” (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 5/12). New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney on Friday said that the teams “are to blame for the current delay in resumption of construction” of the project. Sweeney: “Everything is ready. ... They got your house, my house and the neighbor’s kitchen sink in the (stadium) deal they got with the state. So I think it would be a little bit fair to the taxpayers of this state (to say), ‘Let’s get (American Dream) open and do something positive.'" He said the Giants and Jets "have been extremely selfish and one-sided” (NORTHJERSEY.com, 5/10).
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