The Kingsbridge National Ice Center (KNIC), which will be the world’s largest ice center when complete, last night won approval from the Bronx’s Community Board 7, creating a pathway to full project approval.
Board members voted 20-5 in favor of the project and the $1.7 billion it will create for the Bronx community.
“The Community Board’s vote in favor of the Kingsbridge National Ice Center reflects the overwhelming support local stakeholders have demonstrated for this project and the more than $1.7 billion in benefits it will generate for the community,” said Kevin Parker, founder and chairman of KNIC Partners.
“Yesterday’s vote is a significant and positive step toward gaining City Council approval before the end of 2013 and sends a clear signal that now is the time to reactivate the iconic and long-vacant Kingsbridge Armory.”
The Kingsbridge National Ice Center now goes before Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. for approval as it continues to make its way through ULURP, followed by the City Planning Commission and finally, the City Council.
Mayor Bloomberg announced the selection of the KNIC plan at a press conference inside the vacant Armory in April after KNIC Partners entered into an agreement with nearly 30 community organizations that includes one of the most robust packages of benefits ever offered by a private developer.
The $1.7 billion represents the total economic value of benefits KNIC will generate for the community during the term of its 99-year lease, and includes:
• More than $458 million in living wage earnings rather than minimum wage
• More than $224 million in foregone rental income from the 52,000 square-foot community space KNIC will provide rent-free, as well as an $8 million contribution toward capital improvements
• An in-kind credit of more than $588 million for facility usage by local schools and organizations
• More than $275 million in ice rental revenue, shared with community
• More than $50 million from local procurement, with at least 25% of contracts going to minority- and women-owned businesses in the Bronx
• More than $100 million through targeted local hiring and training, with 51% of jobs going to Bronx residents
• A $100,000 contribution to the de-mapping of the site’s North Parcel to facilitate the development of a school
KNIC also plans to create a foundation to establish free after-school ice sports and academic tutoring programs for disadvantaged youth.
Expected to open in 2017, the Kingsbridge National Ice Center (KNIC) will draw first-time skaters and champion athletes alike.
Its nine year-round indoor rinks – including two sled hockey-compatible rinks for people with disabilities – will more than double the number of ice facilities in New York City.
The $320 million project is currently making its way through ULURP and is expected to break ground in 2014.