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Demolition of Polo Grounds to Start Friday

Apr. 7, 1964 - Today was the 91st anniversary of the birthday of John Joseph McGraw, and New York City, with strange timing, announced that the demolition of the Polo Grounds would start Friday morning. Where the crack of bat on ball and the roar of the crowd once carried across Coogan’s Bluff, the ring of the sledgehammer at 8 a.m. Friday will mark the beginning of the end of the oldest major baseball park in the country.

The announcement had no room for sentiment. No mention was made of John Joseph McGraw, who for 32 years managed the Giants at the historic 75-year-old park and led his team to 10 pennants and three world championships. William Reid, chairman of the City Housing Authority, reported simply that the 17.5-acre Polo Grounds would be razed to make way for four 30-story buildings in a $30 million housing and community project.

The development will be bounded by Eighth Avenue at West 155th Street and the Harlem River Drive. It will have apartments ranging from 3 to 7½ rooms and 369 apartments constructed especially for elderly residents.

Mr. Reid said that, in addition to the dwelling units, there would be a school, a children’s center, a play area, a community center, a child health station, a laundry, and parking facilities — but no baseball diamond.



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