HUMBOLDT — The new outdoor skating rink/recreation flex space will be located at Centennial Park, on the north side of the skateboard park.
“We just want to note that we're pushing this one forward as fast as possible because of the MEEP (Municipal Economic Enhancement Program) funding and the timeline requirements that we have with it,” said Michael Behiel, Humboldt’s mayor, at the Feb. 22 council.
“But it's also important to note that we have additional plans to create more of these spaces in a smaller nature in the coming months and years.”
The estimated $350,000 price tag for the project is to be entirely funded by the MEEP, a provincial program that provides stimulus aimed at working against the negative economic impacts of the pandemic.
“In my mind, this is replacing something that we had at one time in the community that was very well used by residents and very dearly missed,” said Councillor Rob Muench, who told council earlier the previous outdoor ice rink was removed when the city sold the piece of property the old one sat on to Caleb Village.
“We've had this opportunity to go ahead and proceed with this.”
The city examined seven locations for the project: Centennial Park, Glenn Hall Park, Carl Schenn Park, AE Kilcher Park, the proposed park north of the hospital, St. Dominic School grounds and St. Augustine School grounds.
Five factors were looked at for each location: centrality within the community, ease of access, how it would complement surrounding uses, impact on surrounding residents, initial development hurdles and ongoing operational requirements.
Because the facility is expected to be used year-round, noise was a major factor in the decision. The Centennial Park location also makes it easier to maintain the site and get an ice resurfacer to the rink.
Now that a location is set, the city’s leisure services department will finalize plans for the facility and begin preparing documents to get the project to tender.