NY City Council OK’s Plan for Tennis Center

July 24, 2013

The New York City Council on July 24 voted overwhelmingly in favor of the USTA’s plan to improve the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center (NTC) in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. The plan will ensure the NTC remains a top public recreational facility and world-class spectator venue and also continues to be an economic catalyst for Queens and the City of New York.

By a 47-1 margin, the City Council approved the legislation, which will enable the USTA to replace and renovate aging, out-of-date infrastructure and facilities that have reached the end of their useful lives. The City Council vote was the culmination of a public review process that also included the local community boards, Queens Borough President, City Planning, and the State Legislature.

“We are very pleased that the City Council passed the legislation,” said David A. Haggerty, Chairman of the Board, CEO and President of the USTA. “The updates and improvements to the NTC will enhance the usage of the tennis center for local residents, visitors and professional and recreational tennis players while also preserving the US Open Tennis Championships as a world renowned event.”

Gordon Smith, Executive Director and COO of the USTA, added: “We are confident that in partnership with the local Queens communities and elected officials, we will ensure a better Flushing Meadows Corona Park and National Tennis Center.”

In exchange for the 0.68 acres of parkland it will add as part of its improvement plan for the NTC, the USTA will return to the city a portion – 1.56 acres – of its currently leased NTC land. The USTA will also launch an increased community outreach program and has made a long-term commitment to fund capital improvements in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, and to help establish the FMCP Alliance, which will be dedicated to improving all aspects of the Park moving forward.

“I’m happy to announce that we have reached a deal on the $500 million project to expand the National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Corona Park,” Council Member Julissa Ferreras, who represents Corona and East Elmhurst, said. “This deal was a long time coming and I can say with confidence that we will all benefit from this expansion. I am very proud that my community got engaged and demanded a voice in this process. I look forward to working with the USTA to improve the park for everyone.”