November 29 - December 6, 2006
By The Hartford News Staff
Next Monday, December 4, a group of 50 youngsters from the Boys & Girls Club on Broad Street will turn a neighborhood dream into a reality. The youngsters will be participating in a Learn to Skate program that will mark the first community use of Trinity College’s new Community Sports Complex (TCCSC) near the corner of Broad Street and New Britain Avenue in Hartford’s Barry Square neighborhood.
Trinity’s women’s hockey team played the first game at the new complex on Friday, November 17.
Among those in the stands that night was neighborhood activist Hyacinth Yennie, who has been involved in the project since 1998. “I think it [the TCCSC] is wonderful. It’s a very positive thing for the community,” she said.
Rama Sudhaker, Director of Communica¬tions at Trinity, said the final price tag for the TCCSC is approximately $16 million. The project is a joint effort between Trinity and the Southside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance (SINA).
Construction of the complex has been completed but a few details remain, such as landscaping and decorating the interior of the facility.
The centerpiece of the TCCSC is an NHL-regulation size ice rink which will be used by Trinity’s male and female hockey teams as well as the community at large.
Yennie said she is on a committee that will meet with the college some time in January to decide exactly when the TCCSC will be open to the public.
The rink has a seating capacity for 1,300 people and the ice can be removed for use of the space for live performances, meetings and other events.
Although the TCCSC was originally designed with a rock-climbing wall, it was eliminated due to funding cut-backs, said Yennie.
The TCCSC is located on the site of the former Trinity Plaza Shopping Center. Yennie said part of the Maple Avenue Revitalization Group’s overall plan for the area included building something positive for the neighborhood at the site after the shopping center closed down.