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U.S. Open to have separate night session at Armstrong Stadium

The new Louis Armstrong Stadium under construction with

The new Louis Armstrong Stadium under construction with Arthur Ashe Stadium in the background at the National Tennis Center in Queens on July 21, 2017. Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

When the new Louis Armstrong Stadium at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center debuts for this year’s U.S. Open, there will also be major scheduling changes for the tournament.

For the first time, there will be a separate night session for Armstrong Stadium along with a new match schedule for Arthur Ashe Stadium. Two matches will be scheduled at night in Armstrong as a separate session from the opening day Monday, Aug. 1, through Saturday night Sept. 1, starting at 7 p.m.

Instead of the traditional three matches in Ashe Stadium during the day session, there will be two, with a new start time of noon instead of 11 a.m. All other matches on other courts will start at 11, and Armstrong will have three matches scheduled during the day for the first nine days.

“The new Louis Armstrong Stadium, with its new roof, gives us more scheduling flexibility, and by creating a new night session in Armstrong and reducing the day matches in Ashe, we have a chance to alleviate the congestion that occurs when the day matches in Ashe run long,” Chris Widmaier, managing director of corporate communications for the United States Tennis Association, told Newsday.

It also creates a certainty that the night session in Ashe, with a turnover of 23,000 ticketed fans from the day to night, will start at its regular 7 p.m. time, a relief to broadcasters, players and to the crush of fans who in the past have jammed up the plaza and food court waiting to get in.

The new night session on Armstrong is also an additional ticket purchase for each of those sessions. There will be 14,000 seats in the new Armstrong, divided approximately in half between reserved seat tickets and general admission to any ticket holder. While there is a chance the Armstrong day session could run long, there will be a much smaller turnover of ticket holders between day and night.

New York Sports