Stephen Nessen, Reporter, WNYC News
Stephen Nessen reports for the WNYC Newsroom and can often be heard live on Morning Edition.
Madison Square Garden unveiled a $1 billion renovation Thursday. The Garden now features a viewing platform at the top of the arena, gourmet taco and bar-b-que concessions, and memorabilia, like a vintage Zamboni and boxing scales on display.
The 134-year old storied arena lost a major battle with the city, which decided this year not to grant the owners a lease in perpetuity, but to limit it to 10 years.
The 3-year renovations took place during the Knicks and Rangers off seasons and expanded the main concourse, added more luxury box seats, and brought back 1,000 more of the classic blue seats the arena is known for.
Court views from upper level at Madison Square Garden's new viewing platform. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC).
The newly renovated concourse has been doubled in size. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)
Mike D from the Beastie Boys at the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new renovations. "Any musician from anywhere, there's sort of a legend, a status, associated with this building that you don't really have at any other arena around the world," he told WNYC. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)
Vintage Zamboni on display at newly renovated Madison Square Garden. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)
Vintage Wayne Gretzky locker on display in newly renovated hallways at the Garden. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)
A video display on the ceiling in the concourse of the Garden. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)
Legendary Knick Willis Reed (L), CEO of Madison Square Garden Hank Ratner, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, President and CEO James Dolan, and Ranger Mark Messier. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)