Red Hook recreation center shuts down due to damages caused by Hurricane Ida
The Red Hook Recreation Center is now the latest New York City meeting spot to feel the effects of Hurricane Ida after it wreaked havoc across the boroughs just months ago.
The closure – which is on a temporary basis – is due to the massive floods that occurred which left the center with a damaged boiler. This latest development is now leaving a community without one of the heart and soul parts of a neighborhood, one that provides endless resources from sports to even programming for seniors.
Red Hook residents tell News 12 much is being lost as the recreation center doors are now closed.
“Yes, it makes me very angry that you have no use,” said David Small. “It's like where do we go from here? There's no other place. No other fitness or public forum. This is a public spot. We don't have no other public place to go to that's in this area.”
Small says he is just of many people who have used the facilities for years. He acknowledged, like many others particularly seniors, he will be impacted by the closure at the space located at 155 Bay St. , as it provided a place for people to come and work on their fitness. Small believes that is important he keeps up as he faces various health challenges.
The NYC Parks Department did say it fully anticipates that the facility will reopen soon. It is not closed indefinitely.
Efforts are underway to obtain a mobile heating unit which would provide a more temporary solution for the time being. Other efforts include programming outside the center since summer, along with signing people up for free promotional memberships that can be used at other recreation centers. But even with those possibilities, there still could be problems ahead.
“You have to catch two buses there and then when you get off the bus, you still have to walk up the hill to get into the facility,” he added. “You still have to go around to Seventh Avenue. That's two whole blocks. Then you have to go to the center of the block because of the park. It's still more work. I won't be able to make it.”
A planned reconstruction project has yet to go through some more phases with construction that may not begin for two years, but many just hoping a solution will made for the doors to the center to reopen.