Crews laid the artificial turf at Sinatra Field this week, bringing the city one step closer to reopening the waterfront soccer field that's been closed since 2009 when the pier on which it sits partially collapsed.
An official date has yet to be set, but Mayor Dawn Zimmer said the field would reopen as soon as its nets and railings are installed.
“The turf is down and we will soon be reopening Sinatra Field and connecting a new segment of our waterfront walkway so that we will have a continuous multi-use path from the Jersey City border to the skate park at Castle Point,” Zimmer said in a statement.
The field was originally set to reopen last December, but the project's timeline was delayed after the decaying pier collapsed further just a few weeks into its re-construction.
The field's revised completion date of Aug. 15 has also since passed, but city spokesman Juan Melli said the project would still come in under budget with no overtime costs because of a clause in the city's construction contract.
Per the contract's "liquidated damages" clause, the contractor, Scafar Contracting Inc., must pay a $1,500 per day penalty for every day past Aug. 15 that the park isn't open.
For that reason, it's in the contractor's interest to have the park ready sooner rather than later.
“Thanks to the fine work of our city’s legal team, the contractor has worked hard at their own expense to complete this park as quickly as possible,” Zimmer said.
Melli told NJ.com that the city had budgeted just under $12 million for the project, but that total costs should come in under that figure due to the contractor's time overrun penalties.