After last-minute negotiations with a local holdout, the City Council voted Tuesday to approve the Kingsbridge National Ice Center to the Bronx. Credit: Office of the Mayor
After last-minute negotiations with a local holdout, the City Council on Tuesday voted to approve redevelopment plans that will bring the country's largest ice center to the Bronx.
The Kingsbridge Armory, a hulking complex built between 1912 and 1917, will be transformed into the Kingsbridge National Ice Center under the proposal first backed last year by Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. and endorsed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg in April.
Approval of the $320 million plan came following the support of Councilman Fernando Cabrera, whose district includes Kingsbridge.
Cabrera previously said he was concerned the project would snarl traffic and and negatively affect local businesses. His support was earned only after the developer pledged to pay for a traffic study during negotiations Monday.
"We're very proud of this project," Cabrera said.
Also part of the deal, a $250,000 fund to support local businesses will now be administered by the Department of Small Business Services instead of the developer.
The facility will have nine ice rinks, 64,300 square-feet of program space and additional retail and community space.
Bloomberg has advocated for the armory's redevelopment since 2010, when he supported a proposal to turn the structure into a mall.
The mayor said in a statement that the redevelopment was another example of his administration's commitment to turning symbols of decline into "community treasures."