Updated 03/30/2009 03:26 PM
Bronx Residents Excited About New Ballpark
In celebration of the Mets' and Yankees' new stadiums, NY1 presents a five-part series looking at each ballpark's construction, its amenities, and its impact. NY1's Dean Meminger filed the following report on how Bronx residents are responding to the new addition to the neighborhood.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
The new Yankee Stadium stands out on 161 Street like a shiny championship ring. And plenty of people who live and work in the area cannot stop looking at it.
"I like it a lot," said one local resident. "It is a brand-new structure."
"I'm excited for the season to start and for the buzz that the stadium is going to create for the area," said another.
"Well, it is a lot better than the old stadium," said a third. "As you can see, everything is up to date now."
So far, the stadium has cost the Yankees $1.5 billion. The city has loaned the team the majority of the stadium's financing in tax-exempt bonds.
Most local residents said they were not worried about the city funding, as they see the stadium and a new shopping center just a few blocks away as economic engines for their neighborhood.
"It is going to be beautiful. I am not going to move out of here," said a Bronx resident. "I'm going to stay here forever. I've been here for 37 years."
"It is super good for the community, providing jobs and giving us a facelift," said another.
"Maybe this is the beginning of a new partnership between the Yankee manager and the community in making this a more productive and economic variable area," said a third.
Although the Yankees received a standing ovation from many, there are still residents who are very concerned with all of the public parkland that was taken away in order for this stadium to get built.
Lawmakers gave the Yankees ownership of Macombs Dam Park and a part of Mullaly Park to build on. The city is currently working on replacing those parks and says the old stadium will be torn down and a park will be put in its place.
"I really, really hope they keep their word on replacing those things for us," said a local. "We like grass, we like trees, and we like flowers, too."
"We used to play hardball there. So they took our recreation to put a stadium up for them to play baseball," said another.
Some area residents said they are upset about the high price of tickets to watch the local team play.
"It is expensive for the community," said a Bronx resident. "I think it is for the outsiders, the rich people."
"Well, it is going to be hard to get a ticket and get inside for the average fan," said another fan, who lives across the street from the new stadium. "Prices have gone up and of course seats are going to be limited. People are going to come from all across the country and probably all over the world. So it is going to be hard get a ticket."
However, like most around in the Bronx, he said he will proudly cheer on his hometown Bronx Bombers as they open their new stadium.