New Athletic Field Coming to North Ward

Friday, 12 December 2014 17:01 Local Talk News Editor


The City of Newark and the Newark Housing Authority were joined by The Coca-Cola Company, Constellation, and Newark City Councilman, Anibal Ramos to break ground on a new multi-use athletic field in the North Ward of Newark. The field is located on the grounds of The Waterfront, a new center for sports, arts and entertainment. The Waterfront is owned by the Newark Housing Authority, under a declaration of trust to the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

In accordance with an agreement with Just One Soccer League, the field will be used for youth soccer games, practices and tournaments. The ceremony and groundbreaking will take place at 3:30 P.M. at The Waterfront, located at 2 Grafton Avenue, Newark, NJ.

Mayor Ras Baraka, Councilman Anibal Ramos and Executive Director Keith Kinard of the Newark Housing Authority welcomed their partners, The Coca-Cola Company and Constellation, represented by Spencer Ryan Jones and Rachel Duncan, respectively, and the public to the ceremonial groundbreaking. Just One Soccer League of Newark will use the field for its youth soccer games, practices and tournaments, pursuant to an agreement with the Newark Housing Authority.

North Ward Councilman, Anibal Ramos, stated, "I am extremely proud to have played a role in securing $100,000 from the city's settlement with Hess for the construction of a soccer field at the Waterfront. This is an investment in our children that will pay dividends for years, giving them a place to participate in a healthy activity in a safe environment. The Hess settlement funds were intended to be used for exactly this kind of community project that will benefit all the residents of our city, but especially our youngest."

"This new field will promote athletic activity among our residents, especially our youth. We hope that this soil will cultivate many upcoming wins for our local soccer team leagues in Newark. We are grateful to Constellation Energy, The Coca-Cola Company and all those who have worked with us to provide this much-needed field and for helping us transform Newark into a City we can all believe in," said Mayor Baraka.

"The Housing Authority constructs more than just bricks and mortar structures for our residents," commented Keith Kinard, Executive Director. "We provide amenities to public housing residents and to the citizens at large of the City of Newark. The Waterfront Center and this athletic field fulfill social and recreational needs of Just One Soccer League, public housing residents and the citizens of Newark."

"For more than a decade, The Coca-Cola Company has been committed to making a truly positive impact in the Newark community," stated Michael Sullivan, Vice President Sales, New York Metro Operating Unit. "Working with the Newark Housing Authority and local officials, we are thrilled to help bring this new multi-use field to the Waterfront. We believe thriving activity spaces such as this are the cornerstone of neighborhoods and provide a safe environment for families and friends to enjoy being active together."

"Giving back to the communities we serve is a key part of Constellation's culture, so we're especially pleased to help support this project," said Constellation Corporate Relations Manager, Rachel Duncan. "The athletic field is an extension of our energy efficiency work with the Newark Housing Authority and its efforts to provide a green, healthy and vibrant community for the residents of Newark."

"Adding a new athletic field to The Waterfront, that already provides arts and entertainment to area residents, will be an asset that Newark families can enjoy for generations to come," said Maria Maio-Messano, HUD New Jersey Field Office Director. "I am pleased that HUD was able to allow the field on housing authority grounds, and I look forward to seeing this expansion come to fruition."

The field will be constructed of artificial turf and is expected to be completed in the Spring of 2015. The estimated $800,000 construction will be funded from a combination of sources - the City of Newark, a grant from The Coca-Cola Company through the National Recreation and Parks Association, Constellation and the Newark Housing Authority.

The Newark Housing Authority has a portfolio of over 77 properties. It is the largest Housing Authority in New Jersey and the eleventh largest in the nation. The Authority is also a redevelopment agency.

For more information contact: Gloria Wright,, (973) 876-8905, or

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