FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 13, 2021
CONTACT: email@example.com 1(212) 306-3322
NEW YORK – The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) and the New York Police Department (NYPD) announced a major milestone in the effort to substantially upgrade basketball courts at 15 NYCHA campuses across New York City with a ribbon-cutting event for new basketball courts at the Queensbridge North and South Campuses on Thursday.
Funded through $4 million in asset forfeiture monies provided by the NYPD and their federal law enforcement partners, the basketball court upgrades are the start of what hopes to be an ongoing partnership between the NYPD and NYCHA and represent two signature strategies from the two agencies: the Police Department’s Kids First initiative and the Authority’s Connected Communities program.
The New York Police Department’s Kids First initiative aims to keep young people active during the summer months through community investments and programming, while NYCHA’s Connected Communities program approach engages residents during the renovation of a proposed project on the changes they would like to see on public space amenities ranging from basketball courts to walking paths.
The Queensbridge North and South NYCHA campuses are home to more than 6,230 residents – and more than 1,400 children and young adults between the ages of 10 and 24.
“NYCHA is committed to activating our open spaces in a way that builds community and connection among our residents, and the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic made that focus even more essential,” said NYCHA Chair & CEO Greg Russ. “The investments in these basketball courts made possible through the support of the NYPD and our federal law enforcement partners will allow us to provide our young people with additional opportunities for outside play and athletic programming as we move forward in to the recovery.”
“NYCHA recognizes the vital role that basketball courts play in improving the quality of life for our young people and fostering community among our residents,” said NYCHA EVP for Community Engagement and Partnerships Sideya Sherman and Executive Director, Taskforce on Racial Inclusion and Equity. “We are grateful to the many public housing residents who engaged with us around the changes they wanted to see and to the public, private, and foundation partners who helped to make projects like this a reality.”
“Transforming public spaces for New York City kids to learn, play, and dream has always been important – but it has never been more important than at this moment,” said Police Commissioner Dermot Shea. “This is truly a Field of Dreams moment. We know that if we built it – invest the time and resources – they will come. And I want to thank all of our partners for engaging in this collaborative effort to continue creating opportunities for our kids to reach their full potential.”
As part of each renovation process, NYCHA engaged with residents and community stakeholders through design surveys and virtual meetings that started in January and February of this year. More than 600 residents responded to the surveys that were sent out to the developments receiving upgrades. This was followed by further collaboration with the residents and community stakeholders during virtual meetings to finalize the designs for each court.
The financial and logistical support provided by the NYPD and federal law enforcement partners enabled NYCHA to complete the majority of upgrades for these basketball courts in a span of four months. NYCHA worked closely with the NYPD to identify the NYCHA campuses that could serve as ideal sites. Additionally, the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice (MOCJ) will provide sports programming for these sites.
The NYCHA campuses that have received or are slated to receive court upgrades include:
|Development||Borough||Project Completion Date|
|Wagner Houses||Manhattan||May 2021|
|Marcy Houses||Brooklyn||June 2021|
|Frederick Douglass Houses||Manhattan||June 2021|
|Tompkins Houses||Brooklyn||June 2021|
|Lillian Wald East Houses||Manhattan||June 2021|
|Lillian Wald South Houses||Manhattan||June 2021|
|Penn-Wortman Houses||Brooklyn||June 2021|
|Sheepshead Bay Houses||Brooklyn||June 2021|
|William McKinley Houses||Bronx||June 2021|
|Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Towers||Manhattan||June 2021|
|Forest Houses||Bronx||June 2021|
|Queensbridge North Houses||Queens||August 2021|
|Queensbridge South Houses||Queens||August 2021|
|Castle Hill Houses||Bronx||October 2021|
|Richmond Terrace Houses||Staten Island||December 2021|
As part of the capital upgrade process, the outdated basketball courts were scarified and resurfaced with new asphalt before receiving customized paint coatings and a unique logo designed with resident input. Additionally, the courts received new backboards, rims, and nets; new benches and trash receptacles as well as new trees for the surrounding tree pits. Later this year, these same upgrades will come to the Castle Hill and Richmond Terrace Campuses in the Bronx and Staten Island respectively.
In addition to NYCHA and the NYPD, the refurbishment program features the involvement of key government partners that include the Parks Department, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, Homeland Security Investigations and the NY/NJ HIDTA; foundation partners that include the New York City Police Foundation, the First Responders Children’s Foundation, the Mandela Foundation, Toys for Tots, Good 360, and Franklin Toys as well as several community-based organizations.
About New York City Housing Authority
The New York City Housing Authority is the largest public housing authority in North America, housing nearly 400,000 residents. NYCHA’s mission is to increase opportunities for low- and moderate-income New Yorkers by providing safe, affordable housing and facilitating access to social and community services. Over 390,000 New Yorkers reside in NYCHA’s 316 public housing developments and PACT developments around the five boroughs. Over 190,000 receive subsidized rental assistance in private homes through the NYCHA- administered Section 8 Leased Housing Program. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov/nycha, and for regular updates on NYCHA news and services, connect with us via www.facebook.com/NYCHA and www.twitter.com/NYCHA.