Sep
17

Gate 2 group disputes high preservation costs

By

Proponents say Gate 2 could be saved for $1 million. (Image via Save the Yankee Gate 2 Committee)

When we last checked in with the committee working to save the old Gate 2 and incorporate it into the design of Heritage Park, the movement had seemingly hit a cost problem. A few anonymous critics of the plan had leveled the charge that the effort would cost $10 million. While a nice idea, saving old Yankee Stadium’s Gate 2 would be cost prohibitive. Plus, they said, the gate was “significantly changed” during the 1970s renovations.

Today, the group hit back. In a press release, Mark Costello and John Trush, the two men spearheading the preservation effort, claim that it would cost just $1 million to save Gate 2 and that most of the gate is original. “Assessments we have received from several architects and structural engineering firms have determined preserving Gate 2 to be a simple/straightforward project,” the release reads. “They have estimated that the expense of its restoration would be approximately $1 million, a small fraction (less than 2%) of the overall cost to build Heritage Field.”

To those decrying the originality of the gate, Costello and Trush have done their homework. “Today Gate 2 is 80 percent original, even after the 1973-76 renovations,” they say. “Historical photographs, blueprints, historians, and baseball experts confirm this originality. The small modifications made to the upper portion of the Gate are compatible with the original 1920’s design and if retained in the preserved Gate, would allow it to include elements of the 1923 construction, the 1928 expansion and the 1976 modernization.”

More vital to the effort to earn support though is the revelation that the group could defray even these relatively minimal costs through volunteer work. “Discussions with several contractors indicate their willingness to volunteer services for this effort,” they announced. “Similar to the current Polo Grounds Staircase Project, fundraising through pledges can produce additional financial options. The sale of commemorative paving bricks also has the potential to defray much of this cost.” I would buy a commemorative brick in front of the old Yankee Stadium Gate 2.

The group also commented on the need to preserve something from the Gate, a theme I touched upon last time. If the city destroys all of Yankee Stadium in their efforts to build the park, we can’t get it back once we look around and realize our baseball history is gone. The City’s Design Commission has asked the Parks Department to reevaluate their plans for Heritage Field in an effort to “capture the historical significance of the original Yankee Stadium.” Gate 2, with its minimal upkeep costs, would be the perfect vehicle for that request.

In the end, this may be a movement without a big enough sponsor. While a Daily News poll in August found 78 percent of readers would support this plan even with a $10 million price tag, no one has stepped forward from the Yankees to embrace it. Craig Calcaterra today urged A-Rod to throw his weight behind it in the form of a public commitment of support and money. The Yankees could easily make the same gesture, and if $1 million is the true cost of this plan, neither A-Rod nor the Yanks would notice the money is missing.

On Monday, the group is going to meet with the Bronx Borough President, and leaders have been trying to drum up support from other local politicians. Meanwhile, with Gate 2 currently shrouded by construction netting, time is of the essence. Will the city destroy history or will cooler heads prevail before it is too late?

Categories : Yankee Stadium

47 Comments»

  1. rbizzler says:

    For a million bones, this is a no-brainer. I am sure they could raise the cash easily and I have no doubt that they would be overwhelmed by volunteer support. The fanbase (rightfully so) is supremely attached to the old digs and the chance to help preserve at least some of its legacy would be welcome.

  2. AJ's Chin Music Ensemble says:

    SAVE IT…WE WILL ALL BE SORRY WHEN IT’S GONE. IT IS A TOTAL NO BRAINER…IF AROD WON’T CUT A CHECK, THE CAPTAIN WILL…HECK I BET EVEN TEX WOULD DO IT. THE DESIGN AND THE IDEA BEHIND IT IS ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT.

  3. Bo says:

    I love how people like Craig Calcaterra tell people like A-Rod how to spend their hard earned money.

  4. Tom Zig says:

    I doubt a-rod would notice $10 million missing either.

  5. My outside yet sort of inside observer’s two cents:

    If a city agency says they don’t want to do something because it will cost 10M, it will actually cost about 6M. If they say they WANT to do something because it will only cost 10M, it will cost 22M.

    If a city agency says we don’t want to do something because it will cost 10M and a private group says “No, you should do it because it will only cost 1M”, they’re both wrong, it will cost 4.75M.

    Not saying that this project should or shouldn’t happen, just saying I doubt that either end of the spectrum is the accurate figure.

  6. Makavelli says:

    Craig Calcaterra today urged A-Rod to throw his weight behind it in the form of a public commitment of support and money. The Yankees could easily make the same gesture, and if $1 million is the true cost of this plan, neither A-Rod nor the Yanks would notice the money is missing.

    Both the Yankees and Alex Rodriguez make more than $1 million a year in interest with their money just sitting in a savings account. There are a handful of people on the Yankees that could make this move. They don’t necessarily HAVE to…but I think we would all be very grateful if they did.

    • if $1 million is the true cost of this plan, neither A-Rod nor the Yanks would notice the money is missing.

      Yeah… that’s not remotely true, though.

      You ALWAYS notice when a million is missing. Even when you’re worth 1 billion.

      In fact, I’d say that someone who has 1B is probably more chapped about having to give up 1M than someone who has a thousand dollars would miss a single dollar.

      • jsbrendog says:

        how about jeter, arod, posada, MO, and tex wouldn’t miss $200,000 each missing?

      • Makavelli says:

        In fact, I’d say that someone who has 1B is probably more chapped about having to give up 1M than someone who has a thousand dollars would miss a single dollar.

        Obviously,

        But that might have more to do with the lifestyle at hand. Having $1,000 and giving up $1 won’t entirely change much of anything…you already were strapped as it is. Having $1 billion, giving up $1 million of it will sink in because that $1 million could have gone to a new yacht or a new gold plated toilet seat. And now you don’t feel as comfortable spending another $1 million because you just contributed that much to something else…

      • Don’t be a jerk, TSJC. He may have said that clearly but you know he meant something else entirely.

        (Just a little joke, Mak!)

  7. gc says:

    If someone can raise 2 million dollars by interrupting the President of the United States during a speech before congress by being a complete and utter a-hole, there’s no reason to believe anywhere between 1 and 10 million dollars can’t be raised by current or former Yankees players, or the universe of Yankee fans who want SOME piece of the Stadium to physically stick around for the next century and beyond.

    • A.D. says:

      One would think those spearheading the effort would look to raise promised funds if in fact the effort were to work.

    • Chris says:

      They managed to raise $600,000 to save Tiger stadium. Considering the economic situations in Detroit and New York, it shouldn’t be a big challenge to raise $1M or more for this.

    • Makavelli says:

      “If OJ can get away with murder…I don’t see any reason why Sonny can’t have his kid…this guy knows what I’m talking about…”

      [points to the only black guy in the court room]

  8. Tom Zig says:

    Everyone in NYS must donate $1 to this fund immediately…or the terriosts will win.

  9. Makavelli says:

    I didn’t say that though haha…Ben did. It was in italics because I was taking it from Ben’s post…

    So I didn’t say it! lol

    ah ha!

  10. [...] the videos, here’s some news on the Save Gate 2 project via River Ave. Blues. They’re disputing recent claims that the cost of the project would be $10 million, they say [...]

  11. [...] the city officials say the plan is cost-prohibitive, the group claims Gate 2 could be saved for around $1 million. Now, with the Parks Department set to gain preliminary approval for its Heritage Field plans, the [...]

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