Tuesday, December 27, 2005

New Haven Coliseum - Oct 06 2005

Once upon a time the city of New Haven housed a locale for a myriad of entertainment....

Workers at the Knights of Columbus recall watching the circus animals be escorted in one by one and two by two...

The New HavenVeterans Memorial Coliseum was built in 1972. 33 years ago.

Did you know....that from July 1-9, 1995, the city hosted the Ninth Special Olympics World Summer Games.

The official address: 275 South Orange Street, New Haven, CT 06510. (203) 503-6000

Next month - January of 2006 - This building will be demolished with all it's history left to only the memories of those who sat in those red and blue seats.

New Haven Coliseum - Nov 16 2005

The demolition process began a few months ago....loong after efforts to save the Coliseum failed.
Jersey barriers and chain link fences began to surround the Coliseum on State, Orange, George & Oak Streets. The New Haven Knights of the United Hockey League, New Haven Nighthawks and Beast of New Haven of the American Hockey League all played there.....

did You know: The Coliseum was designed by the architects Kevin Roche / John Dinkeloo & Associates. The Coliseum hosted events from 1972 to September 1, 2002, when it closed permanently.
The final event held there was a Professional Wrestling show held by World Wrestling Entertainment....

The Parking lots for the Coliseum were constructed on top of the actual Coliseum itself.The New Haven marketplace found the approach to parking less than desirable upon the views of the quarter mile helical ramps ....

Street storefronts and an exhibition hall were never completed.
The Coliseum could hold 11,171 people at full capacity.

New Haven Coliseum - Nov 29 2005

The structure of the parking garages had deteriorated to the point where large canvas rectangles had to be attached to the outside to catch pieces of concrete which would occasionally drop off onto the sidewalk below.

The city shut the facility down after concluding that it was a drain on city coffers.

The city did not hold any public hearings, referendum votes, or conduct any legitimate surveys.

Several groups, local stakeholders, and the Coalition to Save Our Coliseum mounted a campaign to save and renovate the Coliseum.

While others in the community supported the plan to demolish the facility.

The city's plans to demolish the Coliseum will make room for a new downtown/Long Wharf redevelopment plan.

AS you can see from the photos I have taken since October......

most of the arena facility has been demolished in advance of the implosion.

From my view of the 18th floor from the Knights of Columbus, Myself and others watched the "claw" dig out the Coliseum from the inside.

Concrete was seperated from cold steel. Seats lay in piles of red and blue - leaving behind ghost of children, adults, teenagers from all walks of life with happy memories from the past.

New Haven Coliseum - Dec 11 2005

Then one December Day - the light of day could be seen clear through were heart of where the Coliseum once stood. The 4.5 acres of land is slowly opening up to a new era and in the infancy of a new Century.

I walked by the newly open air that day...and paused upon looking up at the blue seats in the corner above. I remember a day long ago....a summer when Terri, Marcia and I all held tickets to see J.Geils. For the most part - the "stories of that night" remain entrusted in the three of us - but as I looked up at those very stairs - the ones I "fell UP" after having WAAY too much Pepermint Schnapps - I had to smile. After falling up the stairs - I continued to dance the night away to lyrics such as:
" My blood runs cold
My memory has just been sold
My angel is the centerfold
Angel is the centerfold"

Ahhh....Good Times!! ( The rest of the summer I was on crutches! )

Who knew that one day I would work next door to this historic site. Where on Dec 9, 1967 the Lizard King was fined $25 for disturbing the peace.

"Blood in the streets in the town of New Haven....."

The Demolition will be upon us soon...most likely on an early Sunday morning.....

....stay tuned....

Stolen Marina

Once upon a time there was a marina - nestled in a corner of the Patchogue River in Westbrook CT . This marina has been known to locals and others as the EAST YARD of the Pilot's Point Marina.

Then one day...the marina slowly started to disappear......

Fingers and pilings disappeared left and right.....

What just a few months ago was a lively marina filled with boats, laughter and Martini parties galore.....was now just plain old open water......

Tommy W. begs the question: "Has anyone seen my marina??"

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