Organizations respond to shutting down ice plant in DECC Arena Rink proposal
DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) -- In May, the DECC proposed permanently shutting down the plant that supplies ice to the DECC Arena Rink.
The move comes after an engineering review found corrosion and ammonia contamination in the ice plant, with repairs costing more than $2 million.
“We’ve had to make some hard decisions on top of hard decisions, and this is another one of these examples where I wish it didn’t happen, but it’s just the reality of a hard choice that we have in front of us,” said DECC Executive Director Dan Hartman.
The decision to no longer make ice for the arena means the Duluth Amateur Hockey Association (DAHA) and the Duluth Figure Skating Club will lose access to the space for practice, tournaments and competition, something they say would be devastating.
“Having this critical part of what makes the figure skating world work possibly not being available and severely reducing that is gonna impact the growth of our club,” said Alyssa Reder-Judnick, director of the Duluth Figure Skating Club.
While both organizations utilize other local arenas, they said finding ice time is already tough to come by.
“We have a hard time. Our biggest issue is lack of ice, so now we find ourselves, instead of getting a new or different venue, we’re losing one, so that makes our job that much more difficult,” said DAHA Executive Director Bob Nygaard.
For the DECC, Hartman said the change would provide new event opportunities.
“I know this community wants to see more entertainment, they want to see more concerts and they want to see bigger concerts. It’s hard to do that when we don’t even have the availability,” Hartman said. “If we don’t bring ice back, we can bring more concerts to Duluth, we can bring more conventions to Duluth.”
The DECC Board will make a final vote in July.
This move would not affect Amsoil Arena or the Duluth Curling Club as they both operate off their own ice plants.
Click here to download the Northern News Now app or our Northern News Now First Alert weather app.
Copyright 2023 Northern News Now. All rights reserved.