NEW YORK (PIX11) -- New York State Supreme Court Judge Manuel Mendez will rule shortly on a coalition of Queens community group's lawsuit to block the development of the Willets West Mega Mall.
"We don't want another mall. We need parks for kids," Darryl Steckler, a Holliswood resident told PIX 11.
Many Met fans going into the game say they've heard enough about the proposed Willets West megamall in the shadow of Citifield to know they don't like it.
"There are enough malls around here. We don't need another place to buy shoes," Jennifer Quinn said.
The proposed 1.4 million square-foot mall to be developed by Sterling Equities, the owner of the New York Mets and the Related companies would replace the auto-body shops and build on more than 47 acres of Queens Parkland, currently part of Citifield parking lot. The area has been the scene of numerous protests over the last seven years.
Opponents of the proposed mega-mall argued in New York State Supreme Court against what they called the "give-away" of parkland without the required approval of both the New York state legislature and the city's uniform land use review commission.
"You have five malls already in Queens and they are not doing well," State Senator Tony Avella told PIX11. "Why do we need another one?"
After the hearing, a spokesman for the mall developer, the Queens Development Group, issued this statement:
"Community groups from the League of Conservation Voters to the the Queens Chamber of Commerce to the Carpenters and other trades along with an overwhelming majority of the City Council support this project because it will clean up a site that has been contaminated for decades and turn it into a new neighborhood. The $3 billion private investment being made here is the largest in the borough’s history and will generate thousands of jobs."