Category: Sports

Coming soon: Citi Field

Saturday, February 9th, 2008 | All Things, Sports

Citi Field, the future home of the New York Mets, is scheduled to open its doors by Opening Day 2009 to coincide with the opening of the New York Yankees’ new stadium in the Bronx.

Citi Field

In March 2006, the Mets received approval for $632.1 million in bonds for construction of the new ballpark. (Corporate sponsor Citigroup will be paying $20 million a year over the next 20 years for the naming rights to the park.) HOK Sports‘ plans were unveiled a month later, and on November 13, 2006, the Mets officially broke ground for their first new ballpark since 1964.

The concrete arches and brick, limestone, granite and cast stone façade were inspired by Ebbets Field, home of the bygone Brooklyn Dodgers.

I’ve been able to track the progress of the construction going on adjacent to Shea on my weekly rides out to Queens on the 7 train. This Saturday, avoiding the Chinese New Year parade madness in progress at Main Street, I got a closer look at the project from Willets Point. As of mid-February, about 85% of the stadium’s structural frame is complete.

Citi Field

Mets pitchers and catchers report for duty on Valentines Day!

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A Giant parade

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008 | All Things, Sports

The entire city was still on a high from the New York Giants’ stunning win over the imperfect New England Patriots on Sunday night — a game seen by 97.5 million viewers, the most in Super Bowl history.

And now, on to the celebration! (People of Boston, in the meantime, cried.) On my commute into the office this morning, the subways were crammed with rowdy, banner-wielding, face-painted, blue-jersey clad fans — more than a few of whom looked suspiciously young — all heading into the Financial District for the Giants victory parade through the Canyon of Heroes.

An estimated 3 million football fans attended the ticker tape parade which began at 11AM at Battery Place and culminated with a 1PM City Hall Plaza ceremony, where winning Mayor Michael Bloomberg presented keys to the city to the team’s players, coaches and owners. Streets around the downtown parade route were closed beginning at 7AM to accommodate early-arriving spectators, some of whom began staking out spots along Broadway the night before.

The forecast was for showers on Tuesday morning, but after a few light sprinkles, our Giant heroes were deluged mostly with 50 tons of confetti and shredded paper that rained down on the donated floats. The bells at Trinity Church rang for 45 minutes — mostly drowned out by the cheering crowds — and Trinity’s rector Reverend Dr. James H. Cooper, clad in a Giants cap, offered his blessing over the procession.

Giants parade

The Giants’ parade was the city’s first ticker tape celebration since the Yankees won the 2000 World Series, and the first ever for a Super Bowl championship. Most significantly, this morning’s parade was the first to take place in the Financial District since September 11.

Giants parade

Giants parade

Super Bowl XLII MVP Eli Manning and the Vince Lombardi trophy:

Giants parade

Of course, although the event is called a “ticker tape” parade, financial institutions no longer use ticker tape to record stock prices, as the ticker tape machines became obsolete in the 1960s. The streams of papers are more likely these days to be of the bathroom tissue variety, unfurled from oversized institutional rolls swiped from the restrooms of office buildings lining Broadway.

On the topic of defunct technology, it seems that Polaroid has quietly halted production of its signature instant cameras and film. Does that mean that years from now, kids will have no understanding of what it means to “shake it like a Polaroid picture“? Or will the phrase continue to retain relevance a laYou spin me right round, baby, right round like a record, baby, right round, round, round“?

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In the papers

Monday, February 4th, 2008 | All Things, Sports

Immediately after the Giants’ amazing Super Bowl victory last night, I was out on Columbus Avenue, taking in the spontaneous celebrations erupting in my neighborhood. At the Food Emporium to pick up drinks, it was an entirely different scene: empty aisles, and hardly an employee to be found on the floor or at the registers. As I made my way to the checkout lane, one of the cashiers hastily hustled over from the customer service station, where it seemed the entire supermarket staff was huddled around a mini-television set, jubilantly riveted to the post-game proceedings. I smiled, and with a gesture toward his co-workers, quipped, “So how about those Giants?”

He smiled back and replied in halting English, “Very good. It is a good day. A very good day.”

Yes, it is.

Giants coverage

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