December 28, 2012 by Matt Musico
This was a big day for New York baseball back in 2001. Only two months after the tragedy of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Mayor Rudy Giuliani said the Mets and Yankees agreed with the Big Apple to build new stadiums (follow excerpt from National Pastime):
Outgoing New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani announces the Yankees and Mets have reached a tentative agreement with the city to build a pair of $800 million, retractable-roof stadiums. Mayor-elect Michael Bloomberg, who is concerned if the Big Apple can afford what is believed to be the largest private-public venture in baseball history, will have final word on the $1.6 billion cost of the proposed new ballparks agreements.
Well, we all know how this ended up turning out. Neither team was able to score enough funds to build retractable-roof stadiums in their respective new homes, but they were able to get the blessing of new Mayor Michael Bloomberg to build state-of-the-art venues across the street from their current ones. For the Mets, the cost of construction for their new home that was modeled after Ebbets Field ended up at approximately $900 million, but the Yankees might as well have had a retractable roof installed as well, as the new Yankee Stadium came in at the hefty price tag of $1.5 billion, well over the budgeted $800 million.
I’ve been to both stadiums numerous times since each opened for business in 2009, and both are great. I enjoy Citi Field a little more (probably because I’m a biased Mets fan). However, even though I miss Shea Stadium a lot, at least Citi Field is completely different than the former home of the Amazins. I enjoy going to the new Yankee Stadium, but there was something about the original one that I will always prefer. Plus, the new stadium looks very similar to the old one, but with bigger concourses and more amenities. So to me, the organization tried to re-create something they already had.
Either way, the new homes for New York’s MLB teams are great places to go and watch a ballgame in the summer sun, and it all started on this date, 11 years ago.