MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. - After watching the once vibrant Memorial Field slowly deteriorate over the past decade, Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas announced his plans to revitalize the location.
On Friday, Thomas announced the Memorial Field Engagement Plan, a “comprehensive planning and public meeting process that will bring the field back to life.”
The Engagement Plan includes a potential parking garage, multi-lane running track, updated grandstands, retail space and “aerial walkways” connecting Memorial Field to the Target and BestBuy parking lot across the street. If approved, the city would need to borrow approximately $10 million to offset costs.
“Memorial Field was a destination for families. It was a safe destination for kids. It was an iconic destination for athletes from all over,” Thomas said. “It was a legendary stage for musicians including the Jackson 5 to share their talent with the world. It was a place where character was built, values were defined, and lessons of victory and defeat were learned. It was more than a field. It was a field of dreams.”
Thomas vowed that once the plan is in place and renovations commence, it will be a transparent process for members of the community after previous attempts to revitalize the field fell by the wayside during the previous administration.
“The fiscal mismanagement of this project has come to an end,” Contractors must provide certified payroll and be accountable to the families of Mount Vernon, particularly the people of our city.
“Memorial Field has suffered over 2,5000 days due to ‘political football’ being played, resulting in toxic dumping taking away much needed access to sports and recreation. That game is over.”
Thomas stressed that he would be working alongside the City Council, county and state officials to kickstart progress at Memorial Field.
“The clean up toxic waste and plans for renovations at Memorial Field are top priorities for Mount Vernon residents. I am encouraged that Mayor Thomas and the City Council are prepared to move forward with finding a workable solution to this problem,” Legislator Lyndon Williams said.
“As county legislator, I secured $9.7 million through the county’s Legacy program for Memorial Field in 2009. I look forward to receiving the city’s new plans and working collaboratively to complete the project.”