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Author Topic: A Rink Grows in The Bronx  (Read 2669 times)

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Offline Isk8NYC

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A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« on: April 23, 2013, 11:27:08 AM »
NYC is opening an indoor ice rink in the Bronx - Bronx skaters currently use the seasonal one in Riverbank State Park.  The City is converting a now-closed Kingsbridge Armory into the world's largest skating facility. 

http://www.mikebloomberg.com/index.cfm?objectid=37195847-C29C-7CA2-FF1E2AF19E658D62
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/ice-rink-perfect-bronx-article-1.1204827

Nine sheets of ice?  Wow - they have Big Hockey Plans, of course.  The Islanders might use it as a practice facility.  Sarah Hughes is involved, so hopefully the Harlem on Ice program will also be accommodated and expanded.

I really like the little outdoor "puddle rink" - very classy.



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Offline icedancer

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2013, 11:30:55 AM »
Wow, that is HUGE!!!

Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2013, 11:36:51 AM »
With this facility, they could host Sectionals and Nationals as well as skating shows.

Sarah Hughes stated:

Quote
“It’s going to be an incredible facility and an integral part of the lives of children who come here. It’s going to help them become better athletes and better students,” Hughes told reporters on Thursday.

Source: http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2012/08/23/hockey-arena-planned-for-kingsbridge-armory-in-the-bronx/
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Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2013, 11:39:14 AM »
I wonder why they didn't make it a multi-sports facility?  Track, Baseball and Basketball are all very popular in NYC.  Can they really fill nine sheets of ice? 

The current competition for ice in the Bronx is blamed on the private prep schools outside the borough boundaries looking for hockey practice time.  Figure Skating in Harlem has been looking for more time and getting shut out because the hockey demand is so high.
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Offline Willowway

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2013, 12:04:10 PM »
I think your notion that it should be multi-sport is excellent but that doesn't appear to be the idea. With Messier (in the NYC area there is no comparison between Messier and Hughes - EVERYONE knows who he is) being the lead name, make no mistake - this will be a hockey center if it ever comes to be at all. Doesn't mean that figure skating won't get some ice time but that won't be the focus. 

Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2013, 01:15:33 PM »
Oh yeah, Messier has crowd appeal.  However, Hughes mingles with the upper crust of society.  To fill that much ice, they'll have to open up to figure skating and that's why I believe FS in Harlem will benefit from her presence. 

The police and firefighter hockey teams will help fill the ice during the daytime hours, lol.

I could see them developing the lower rinks and not the upper level surfaces. Those could be changed before construction starts to other sports that don't involve thousands of gallons of water on a second level.

I do hope the outdoor rink stays in the plans, though.  It's so cute!
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Offline nicklaszlo

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2013, 08:47:59 PM »
I wonder why they didn't make it a multi-sports facility?  Track, Baseball and Basketball are all very popular in NYC.  Can they really fill nine sheets of ice? 

Schwan has eight ice surfaces despite a large number of competing facilities in its region.  Minneapolis Metro has 3 million people.  New York metro has 19 million people.  There are about eight existing indoor ice surfaces in NYC proper (counting the one in Long Island), with more in New Jersey.  I expect the Armory will be quite a bit busier than Schwan.  New York will have 5 square inches of ice per capita after construction; My town has 38 square inches and its rink is busy.

Track, baseball and basketball are popular in New York because they already have sufficient facilities.  New York just got a $1.5 Billion baseball field and a $1 Billion basketball arena for spectator sports.

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2013, 11:16:57 AM »
I think the populace in Minnesota is more familiar with ice skating than in NYC and the 'burbs.  FS is not a common sport in NYC; it's more a fun winter activity.  The new builds outside Manhattan haven't taken off like gangbusters without extensive promotion.  (I'm not counting the rink near CitiField as a new build since the nearby World's Fair Arena closed when World Ice Arena opened.)

Another difference to consider is that the MN rinks have parking lots, whereas the Armory is land-locked with very few parking spaces. 



However, the Armory is on the Lexington Line - you can see the red-roofed platforms.  (The train is underground in Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn, elevated in the Bronx and towards the end of the line in Brooklyn.) 

That train route goes through Brooklyn, lower-upper Manhattan and the Bronx, so outer-borough skaters could get there with a change or two.  (In SI's case, they could walk to the #4 station from the Ferry.)  It's not super-convenient, but still, better than nothing.  However, with a bag full of skating/hockey gear, it's not going to be fun, especially during the rush hours.

I read a report that said the lower rinks (incl. the arena) were going to be developed first, which is smart. If that ice gets filled up, then you can reinvest in the facility and build the rest of the sheets as needed.

Looks like Figure Skating in Harlem is a USFSA Basic Skills program, but SCoNY could be the new facility's home club for testing and competitions.  North Jersey FSC could also serve the skaters - they're already bi-state.

Hockey will probably claim the lion's share of ice time, which will be good for Fordham's college team - they currently skate in Mount Vernon, NY.  The Armory will be more convenient for practices and home games.  Go Rams!

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Offline FigureSpins

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2013, 06:23:33 PM »
This is just a bit of humor:

(SKIP AHEAD TO 0:44 to avoid the boring intro.)



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Offline nicklaszlo

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2013, 09:22:33 PM »
FS is not a common sport in NYC; it's more a fun winter activity.

Because the rinks are too crowded to figure skate on?  Rockefeller Center and Wollman are probably not suited for figure skating.

Another difference to consider is that the MN rinks have parking lots, whereas the Armory is land-locked with very few parking spaces. 

Nobody expects parking in New York.  I hope they build a lot of lockers.  (I bike to my rink.)

Offline sampaguita

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #10 on: April 26, 2013, 05:27:30 AM »
wow.....9 sheets of ice....wish i were there....

Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2013, 05:56:06 PM »
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Offline nicklaszlo

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2013, 08:49:55 PM »
480 parking spaces, that's about 53 per rink.  More than I expected!

Offline FigureSpins

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2013, 08:57:55 PM »
Keep telling yourself that everyone in NY takes the subway, lol.  We used to hang out in traffic with friends we met along the way into Manhattan for work. 

Officials assumed that visitors to the Javits Center wouldnt need parking, only to find that exhibitors demanded more parking in the area or they'd head to the Meadowlands.  Lots of private parking lots charging high prices were the result - that area is a ghost town when the venue is dark.  At this rink, they're planning to host large spectator events in the arena.  Out of towners within driving distance will expect parking.  They have two years to knock down buildings and repurpose vacant lots.
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Offline Kitten23

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2013, 01:46:28 PM »
I know I'm late to this party, but as a New Yorker, I thought I'd say a few words.

First, I am not a fan of Mayor Mike Bloomberg.  I think he keeps building/changing things so he'll be remembered.  The open air cafe seating he built in midtown Manhattan just annoys the crap out of me.  I feel he's doing the same thing with this skating rink; so people will say he was a good mayor the way they do about Giuliani.  For the record: hated Giuliani - you can private message me as to why if you care.

Lots of people take the subway, except I've noticed, skaters.  I skate in Manhattan and 99% of the skaters come by car.  I'm the only one who takes the subway and the crosstown bus.  There's a good chance they'll need more parking in the end.

I can only hope that they will remember figure skating, but I have my doubt simply because hockey will get more attention and money into the organization.  I can see the news stories now about inner-city boys with hockey dreams...   Meanwhile, the figure skaters are standing with their noses pressed against the plexi-glass wondering when it's their turn.

I could be wrong; I hope so.
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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #15 on: July 13, 2016, 06:58:30 AM »
Update on the Bronx Armory rinks via the NY Daily News (add one pinch of salt)

http://www.courthousenews.com/2016/04/15/court-battle-brews-on-bronx-skating-rink.htm
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Offline Query

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Re: A Rink Grows in The Bronx
« Reply #16 on: July 14, 2016, 10:59:52 PM »
Nine???? OMG.

If the lawyers settle things amicably in the end, and figure skating gets sufficient priority, including some Olympic sized rinks, I think it could change the U.S. skating scene. In the past, NYC has not been all that common a training center for world class figure skaters. One "little" 9 surface facility could change everything, and attract more high-end coaches to the region.

Figure skating and hockey, at the upper end, are both quite expensive sports. NYC has a fair number of high income people. Sounds like a pretty good match to me.

I'm just curious. How tough a neighborhood is The Bronx these days? Will it scare away the upper crust?

I've been told that one of the biggest reasons that so many world-class skaters from other countries train in the U.S. is that a lot of ice is available. (Ice and money attract world class coaches. Ice and world class coaches attract world class skaters.) Build it, and they will come.

I wonder if they are planning on a long-track speed skating course... Would it count as one of the nine?


P.S. As I mentioned here

  http://skatingforums.com/index.php?topic=7275.msg86886#msg86886

multi-surface facilities pretty much have to be run in a more business-like manner, including the establishment of new in-house and off-season hockey leagues, which often doesn't favor figure skating.

Still, imagine having an overnight "lock-in" skating party for your birthday. 9 surfaces to skate on, all night long.