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(Mount Vernon, NY) After years of uncertainty, County Executive George Latimer and Mount Vernon Mayor Shawyn Patterson-Howard proudly broke ground on Mount Vernon’s historic Memorial Field with a ceremony marking the start of the reconstruction project on Wednesday, August 5.

Latimer said: “Here we are. This project means so much to this City and I am ecstatic that this day has finally come. My Administration has made it a priority to invest in the parks and recreation spaces available to residents – all over the County - and this is another major step in that direction. This is truly government at its finest, working for the people who we serve. I commend my partners in government from the City, County Legislature and State for their joint efforts toward progress – and I want to particularly single out Lyndon Williams for his exception commitment to this project.”

The ceremony included ceremonial shovels, classic bottles of Coca-Cola – a throwback to the iconic Mean Joe Greene commercial filmed at the stadium – and a ceremonial first football toss. Also present was the new sense of optimism and hope that Latimer has brought to this project since he first took office in 2018.

The Memorial Field Complex Reconstruction project will build a beautiful new, lighted multi-sport and events venue that includes a state of the art synthetic turf multi-sport athletic field, an all-weather eight lane running track, renovated tennis courts and a skate park.  Grandstands for 3,900 spectators including VIP seating and a press box will also house full locker room and training room facilities and will mimic the appearance of the original grandstands.  Additional on-site amenities will include an entry plaza, ticket booths, a concession stand, restrooms, wrought iron fencing and landscaping.

Highlights of the renovation plans include:

Patterson-Howard said: “We ran on the premise of forward together, and Memorial Field symbolizes teamwork in action. Since day one, I’ve remained dedicated to seeing Memorial Field to completion and that will happen under our leadership. The soul of Mount Vernon is connected to Memorial Field, as our crowned jewel, its reconstruction is a positive step forward. The people of Mount Vernon deserve it. Thank you to the County Board of Legislators, County Executive Latimer and his team for keeping this project as a priority. I am excited to run through the endzone with our local, county and state leaders.”

This project was advertised by the Westchester County Department of Public Works and Transportation on June 19, 2020 and bids were received on July 15, 2020.  The project was awarded to the low bidder, The LandTek Group in the amount of $24,883,600.00.  Construction anticipates to begin in August and completed in fall of 2021.

LandTek Vice-President of PR/Marketing Marty Lyons said: “On behalf of LandTek and owners Mike Ryan and Ed Ryan, we are extremely happy to be part of the team that will rebuild the historic Memorial Field. We look forward working with County Executive George Latimer and believe in the partnership he is speaks of to get this project done.”

LandTek is a self-performing general contractor founded in 1979 who specializes in sports facility design and construction. They have worked with over one thousand school districts and private schools throughout east coast, in addition to professional and private organizations including Columbia University, JFK Airport, New York City Football Club’s new state-of-the-art practice facility, and Stony Brook University.

This project would not have been possible without the support and funding on a state level from Assemblyman Gary Pretlow.

Pretlow said: “This is a proud day for the City – and people – of Mount Vernon. This new Memorial Field is a symbol of moving Mount Vernon forward and I thank County Executive Latimer, a native son, for his extraordinary efforts. I am proud to have played a part in making this work commence for our City.”

Westchester County is looking forward to the reopening of Memorial Field, which has always been the City of Mount Vernon’s Jewel and creating one of the most preeminent sports and events venue not just in Mount Vernon, NY but in Westchester County.

As Latimer said in February: “For me, Memorial Field is personal. I watched some of my childhood heroes sporting events on that field, I saw major concerts on that field – and I even received my High School diploma on that field. This is about government stepping up and doing right by the people of Mount Vernon.”

Board of Legislators Chairman Ben Boykin said: "Memorial Field has always been a special place.  I remember the excitement of seeing my youngest daughter run track there, cheering side by side with parents and families from all over the County. I'm overjoyed that we will finally be able to restore this jewel.  It will give the people of Mount Vernon the top notch recreational space they deserve, and it will be a facility that everyone in Westchester can enjoy and be proud of."

Legislator Lyndon Williams said: “I have worked continuously and steadfastly to ensure that this day would come. I want to thank County Executive Latimer for carrying through on his commitment. Upon the County Executive taking office in January 2018, I wrote him a letter requesting that the County take charge of managing the revitalization of Memorial Field and turn the completed state-of-the-art facility back to Mount Vernon. He agreed and has never wavered. My colleagues and I on the Board of Legislators worked collaboratively with the Latimer Administration on approving the bond funding, intermunicipal agreements, and legislative actions that were necessary to enable the bidding process and to move the project forward. This all occurred in partnership with Mayor Shawyn Patterson-Howard and the Mount Vernon City Council.”

Legislator David Tubiolo said: “The great city of Mount Vernon deserves a great Memorial Field.  I’m grateful to County Executive George Latimer and Legislator Lyndon Williams for their leadership in getting us to this day.  And I know that together with the administration of Mayor Patterson-Howard, the new Memorial Field we’re breaking ground on today will be a wonderful resource for the people of Mount Vernon, and testament to the things we can do when we work together.”