Construction began on the 400,000 square-foot facility in April 2011, and today, the dream of is a reality.
Inside the former Clairol plant—large warehouse spaces bearing little resemblance to what is seen today—children play in the trampoline room, visitors check out the pools and ice rinks from the large windows on all sides, and over 1,000 children will arrive for summer camp in July.
The search for a second location for the successful Chelsea Piers New York was long, and Stamford was not always the obvious choice. Upon first visiting the location in January 2009, the team was impressed with the scale of the existing buildings and the proximity to populations in both Connecticut and WestChester County.
“We definitely thought we had an “if you build it they will come" project, and actually, that’s still our hope and belief,” David A. Tewksbury, CPCT Principal said. “We have built what we believe is the finest sports facility in North America.”
Chelsea Piers Connecticut is home to dual ice rinks, an Olympic-sized pool, 6,000 square foot water play area, gymnastics training center, baseball and softball training facility, 1000 yard turf field, squash center, and tennis center. It will also house a childcare facility and preschool, The Overlook Bar and Grill, BlueStreak Sports, Stamford Hospital, and FlyWheel Sports.
“I remember my early days at NYU when Chelsea Piers did not exist on the West Side of New York, it was a very different place,” Mayor Michael Pavia said. “And since they’ve opened and created the wonderful amenity that is there now, it has transformed into something indescribable, something that would never have happened on its own.”
Chelsea Piers created over 900 construction jobs over the past year, as well as 4-600 related jobs, and is expected to bring 250 permanent jobs to the city.
“This is a great thing to be happening in Fairfield County and particularly a great thing for Stamford,” Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy said.“It means that the transition of Stamford from what it was once, a large New England industrial city facing a dismal future, to being a great place to have your corporate headquarters…to a city that now has attracted a world class venue for sports and entertainment which will sit astride NBC sports headquarters. This is a remarkable transformation.”
Editor's note: This article by Stamford Patch.