Chelsea Recreation Center

New York City, United States

Chelsea Recreation Center

The Chelsea Recreation Center is a community center and athletic facility operated by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation in Chelsea, Manhattan. At 56,500 square feet (5,250 m2), the building is one of the largest neighborhood recreation centers in New York City, containing a 25-yard six lane pool, volleyball court, basketball court, fitness rooms, dance studios, game rooms, and a computer resource center. The center hosts a wide range of community-oriented classes and events, many of which are free to youth and older adults.

In 1964 the previous Chelsea Recreation Center, the former Chelsea Bathhouse at 407 West 28th Street, was demolished to make way for the construction of the Morgan Annex postal facility. Construction began on a replacement recreation center on June 3, 1974, but was abandoned on January 19, 1976 due to the New York City fiscal crisis of 1975. Windows were sealed over with concrete and steel girders left exposed, with an air conditioner unit remaining on the roof for when construction resumed. Completion of the facility was a consistent request at neighborhood meetings over the next 25 years, and neighborhood groups even hired a consultant and an architect to help make their case to the city.

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