I have heard the concern regarding the closure of the Donnan Arena in King Edward Park. Below is an update provided by the department detailing the situation.
“It has come to our attention that Hockey Edmonton have distributed a fact sheet about the scheduled winter closure of Donnan Arena. We would like to provide some clarification regarding some of its points and provide more information about the arena rehabilitation schedule. Following the approval of the 2015-18 Capital Budget, which included funding for rehabilitation dedicated for City building & facilities. Work immediately started with updating condition assessments and analyzing critical functional components to inform a robust prioritized program. This work was completed in late 2015 including a portfolio of arena projects. The initial two critical arena facilities that have been identified (Donnan, Castle Downs) have now transitioned into full implementation of the design phase. The Donnan Arena is the first arena in this funding cycle (2015-18) scheduled to close for critical life-cycle rehabilitation and the earliest the construction can commence is October 2016. This work is expected to take eight months. The scope of work includes:
● Replacement of the ice plant refrigeration system and dehumidifiers
● Concrete repairs throughout the building
● Replacement of plumbing fixtures, hot water heaters and storage tanks
● Addition of barrier free features to address accessibility issues
We would like to emphasize that this work is necessary to ensure long term sustainability of an important community asset and its operational reliability into the future. A consultant has been hired to address the rehabilitation scope of work for Donnan Arena. The design process and tender will be completed by September 2016. A contractor will be hired to begin the work in October 2016 and have the project completed by the Spring 2017. Donnan is on the regular facility schedule for closure during spring and summer as the refrigeration plant cannot support ice in the warm seasons. If we were to delay the rehabilitation closure of Donnan this would have a ripple effect and impact on future planned rehabilitation projects including Castle Downs Arena. Consideration was given to minimize impacts to arena users. Of 31 City owned sheets of ice, Donnan is the only one that will be unavailable during the 2016-2017 winter season. Also, with the addition of the new arenas at The Meadows Community Recreation Centre, access to ice time in the Southwest and Southeast quadrants of the City is still more than what is was a year ago. Citizen Services provided a response to hockey Edmonton’s letter on January 21, 2016 outlining the guiding principles for arena rehabilitation projects. In addition, Community and Recreation Facilities meets regularly with arena users to discuss allocation, scheduling and rehabilitation projects in arenas. The updated arena rehabilitation schedule was provided to users at the January 26 Minor Users allocation meeting as well at the March 8 Arena Users Committee meeting. Over the next three years we will be investing up to $16 million in arena rehabilitation projects to ensure arena facilities are maintained and in good condition to serve the community. The scheduling for upcoming rehabilitation projects will follow the guiding principles developed following consultation with users. We commit to keeping Council and stakeholders apprised of the progress as the details for this work emerge”.