Giving new meaning to the term "home court advantage" state officials helped introduce the Atlantic City Armory's new indoor sports complex as a place for area youth to stay healthy and active.
"It's an investment in children," said Acting Attorney General John Hoffman.
"In finding them a place where they can recreate, finding them a place where they serve on teams, a place where they can learn so much about being on a team."
Hoffman says the project was first developed four years ago and came at a price tag of2.9 million dollars.
The partnership between the Attorney General's Office, the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and the CRDA also hopes to reach at risk youth and promote an active lifestyle rather than a life of drugs or crime.
"We have to be vigilant about getting criminals off the streets and at the same time, be vigilant on how to help the children in the community," said Hoffman.
For area kids and parents, the facility is a much-needed addition to the city
"It's good cause it keeps the kids out of danger like myself," said 14 year-old Kahirah Howard.
"We wont be on the streets and stuff, they have activities to do."
"There's not a lot of places around here for our kids to do different activities," said Kahirah's mother Keisha Miles.
"It will help them off the street, it will help the older ones away from drugs, and just something positive for the kids to do."
Attorney General Hoffman says the project came in under budget and that the state will continue to invest money in the facility as its popularity grows.
"One of the things were doing is continuing to fund this facility and continue to make sure this facility gets what it needs on an overall basis," said Hoffman.
Hoffman says six groups committed to use the facility prior to opening.
He says the armory is available to schools and non-profit organizations at a flat rate of fifty dollars an hour or thirty-five dollars an hour after seventy-five hours of use, a rate he says is lower than other area facilities.
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