Part of the US Open Site To Be Used for 350-Bed Temporary Hospital Due to Coronavirus Pandemic
(March 30, 2020) Part of the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, the site of tennis’ US Open is set to become a temporary 350-bed on Tuesday due to the fight against the Coronavirus, which has ravaged the New York City area, the Wall Street Journal reports:
Construction could begin as early as Tuesday at an indoor training center at the facility, which has multiple courts and wide spaces, according to a spokesman for the U.S. Tennis Association. The beds will likely be for patients who don’t have Covid-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus, but that could change depending upon need, according to a spokeswoman for the city.
The tennis center’s Louis Armstrong Stadium will be turned into a commissary to create 25,000 meal packages a day, each containing six meals, according to Chris Widmaier, a spokesman for the tennis center. The meals will go to hospital workers in New York City and others who need them, he said.
“We’re there to do whatever the city and state needs,” said Mr. Widmaier.
Deanne Criswell, New York City’s emergency management commissioner, said in an interview Sunday that the city is working to increase capacity in Brooklyn and in Queens, which as of Monday had nearly 12,000 cases and 256 deaths, according to the health department.
“It’s going to take all of us working together to get as many up as quickly as possible as our hospitals continue to see more and more patients every day,” she said.
The site is most likely to be used for non-Covid 19 cases.
The US Open is scheduled to run from August 24 to September 13. The qualifying tournament begins on August 24, with the main draw beginning on August 31.