EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Maroon 5 took the stage Sunday night in what was the last concert at the IZOD Center before it closes for good.
As CBS2’s Valerie Castro reported, the arena’s days are numbered after a swift financial decision made earlier this year.
“A little sad. I’ve seen some good shows here,” said Molly McEneny, of Manhattan.
The IZOD Center has played host to countless acts, events and entertainment for more than 30 years.
For people like Jacki Morrello, the IZOD Center is a place of fond memories.
“I’ve been to New Kids on the Block concerts here. I’ve been to Devils games here, I’ve been to two Maroon 5 concerts here now,” she said.
But the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority Board voted in January to close the venue after projections of an $8.5 million loss for 2015.
The decision to shut it down came as a surprise to many, including local officials who said the news came without warning.
“Why did you do it with less than 24 hours notice? And why didn’t you at least inform the people who are elected to represent the residents who are affected?” said State Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck).
“To shut it down without having a discussion with anybody, that’s very frustrating,” said State Sen. Paul Sarlo (D-Wood-Ridge).
David Castro has directed traffic in the parking lots since 1990. The news means he’s out of a job in just a few weeks.
“I was devastated. Every year you always hear they’re doing this, they’re doing that, and it never came through but when we got the letters in the mail that was the reality” he said.
Now, Castro and other workers like ticket takers and security guards will be in a tough situation.
“I’ll have to go to unemployment and file, but I want to work. It’s not like I don’t want to work. I want to get out there and work. I still got a lot to give,” Castro said.
The issues began when the New Jersey Devils left the IZOD Center and relocated to the Prudential Center in Newark, Castro reported.
The Nets also took the crowds with them when the team moved to Brooklyn.
In addition to concerts, the arena has been the place where people would come to see wrestling matches and the circus, which is scheduled to be the last event to be held there later this month.
Many events will now move to the Prudential Center.
The loss of venue also means a loss of jobs with customers who frequented other nearby restaurants and businesses.