PW councillors have mini arena concerns

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The Huron Optimist concept drawing of the mini arena

Plympton-Wyoming councillors have some concerns about the “mini-arena” being proposed by the Huron Shores Optimist.

The Camlachie service club first floated the idea of an outdoor ice rink – at a cost of $400,000 – in July 2021. In October, the club laid out its formal and much larger $1.6 million plan. It includes a 60 by 120 refrigerated concrete slab and office, changing rooms, a washroom facility, a viewing area, a confection area and it will be covered during the months of December till March.

Oct. 25, council discussed the plan and many had reservations.
Councillor Alex Boughen was concerned the new mini arena would take up much more staff time than anticipated. He suggested checking with other communities which had similar arenas to get a good handle on costs.

“The proposal was a little bit more than I expected,” he added suggesting staff “look at scaled down versions” of the project.

Councillor Mike Vasey was unclear who would pay to move and replace trees and the playground where the project is planned and the zamboni which would be needed to clear the ice.

He also was concerned about cost overruns. “I find it hard to believe the $1.6 million will build this,” Vasey said, adding the municipality doesn’t want to get stuck with the extra costs.

CAO Adam Sobanski said staff would review the plan and “try to provide a financial idea of where potentially we could be sitting” so council could decide if the town could afford to move the project forward.