"Replacement Parks For New Yankee Stadium Come At Greater Cost" NY1 3/20/8
Replacement Parks For New Yankee Stadium Come At Greater Cost
March 20, 2008
New York City Parks Department officials said Thursday that the cost of replacing Bronx parks around the new Yankee Stadium will cost about $62 million more than originally anticipated. NY1’s Bronx reporter Dean Meminger filed the following report.
The park on the side of the old Yankee Stadium, which had softball fields, handball and basketball courts, have been bulldozed to make way for a parking garage for the new Yankee Stadium.
Construction for the new stadium also sits on what used to be several athletic fields. The parks department says all of the parkland will be replaced, but sources say it will cost about $190 million – an increase of $62 million from the original estimate.
"The estimates were made about two years ago, and as is probably pretty well-known, construction costs have sky rocketed," said Liam Kavanagh of the Parks Department.
Also, an underground oil tank was found and had to be drained at the new site for replacement tennis courts, at additional costs. Park advocate Geoffrey Croft says the city should have known about the tank.
"The city did not do a proper environmental assessment of this project,” said Croft. “They rushed it through. And these are the types of problems that are very foreseen."
The area's city council member, Democrat Helen Foster, gave the green light to allow the Yankees to build on top of MacCombs Dam Park, but she is concerned the city might not be able to follow through on promises.
"This stadium across the street will be opened in 2009, but we won't get replacement parking until 2011,” said Foster. “I have always been concerned because we have put the cart before the horse in building this stadium - meaning that we have said the Yankee organization is a priority and not the community."
The Parks Department claims to have finished plenty of replacement park land, and will build a track field on top of one of the parking garages. A huge field is going to replace the old stadium once it is torn down.
- Dean Meminger