West New York Mayor Gabriel Rodriguez, the other town commissioners, Assemblywoman Angelica Jimenez (D-32), and many others took part in a ceremonial groundbreaking for $2 million renovations to the 100-year-old Miller Stadium.
The stadium’s rich history includes baseball legends Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig playing in one of the East Coast’s oldest urban ball parks, and Bruce Springsteen throwing a pitch from the mound in his 1985 music video “Glory Days.”
The stadium will be retrofit with a new drainage system and multipurpose turf playing surface to accommodate both baseball and soccer games, officials announced today.
In an interview, Rodriguez said that the renovations were 30 years in the making.
“This is a field, one of the last urban fields in New Jersey, arguably in the East Coast, with a rich, rich history not only for West New Yorkers, but the nation, and baseball,” he began.
“So many years of games being played here, and memories made by West New Yorkers. We’re just happy to be able to bring a top-notch field to a top-notch community and our student athletes.”
He also noted that the stadium’s history includes Memorial High School’s 28-1 record in 1988 when the Tigers went on to win the USA Today National Championship.
Jimenez also spoke about some of the other star athletes that hail from Hudson County.
“We have had a great deal of athletes that have come through this town starting with our great Congressman Albio Sires, an incredible star basketball player who is so proud of this project, and our Senator (Nick Sacco), an incredible football player, he’s also very proud of this,” said Jimenez.
Additionally, West New York Freeholder Caridad Rodriguez (D-7) said the renovations were long overdue.
“This is a great day for West New York. I’m sure if Congressman Sires could be here today, he would be screaming and clapping out of happiness for this. The youngsters of this town deserve this field, and I’m thrilled this is happening today,” said Rodriguez.
Further, West New York Public Affairs Commissioner Cosmo Cirillo, who oversees the recreation department, highlighted the benefits the renovations will bring to the town’s student athletes.
“I know that the children of this community are really going to have an outstanding place to not only play a game that they love, but be able to come together as one family and one community here in West New York,” said Cirillo.
According to the mayor, the renovations will cost approximately $2 million, paid for through a combination of grants from New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Green Acres and Community Development Block Grants, as well as municipal capital funds.
The renovations are expected to be completed sometime in June.