Basketball City at Pier 36 Delayed Until November

Posted on: July 21st, 2011 at 6:41 am by

Time for an East River waterfront update.  Despite years of backlash from the community, Basketball City is a reality and nearing completion down on Pier 36.  The idea of a ginormous complex of courts here at the former Office of Emergency Management first made waves in 2006.  Many Lower East Side residents have been quite vocal in their dissent, saying that city-owned land should be utilized more responsibly than a for-profit gym for recreational use.

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Back in October, the NYC Economic Development Corporation announced the closing of nearly $13 million in New Markets Tax Credits for the project, paving the way for this 63,000 square-foot “recreational sports and special events facility.”  Upon completion, Basketball City will host youth basketball instruction, camps, leagues, tournaments, and free court time, plus a “home court” for 28 local teams in the New York City Public Schools Athletic League.  Moreover, their presence will reportedly create fifty full-time jobs targeted to lower-income residents.

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The demolition-construction tandem began shortly after the new year, and has been ongoing ever since.  Projected opening date at the time of ground-breaking was ambitiously scheduled for the summer 2011.  This will absolutely not happen.  Last Thursday, CB3’s waterfront committee briefly discussed progress on this pier-side basketball endeavor.  Apparently the building is moving along “nicely,” but the opening is now delayed.  It’s looking like October or November before those hoop dreams come alive.

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