Riverside Park to be home of Kamloops outdoor skating rink

Image Credit: PEXELS

KAMLOOPS - Kamloops city council will discuss the future of a proposed $3 million outdoor skating rink tomorrow.

Riverside Park's spray park was ranked as the most preferred location out of five possible spots, according to a study the city approved in February.

The skating surface is expected to have the approximate area of an NHL arena, but it will not be used to play hockey. Sideboards will likely consist of small, removable wooden curbs. Washroom facilities and a fire pit will be provided beside the skating surface with benches for skaters to change footwear. 

Though food facilities are outside the scope of the project, a food truck may be brought in. Skate rentals are assumed to be provided by a third party. Safety measures such as lighting and visibility to traffic were also considered in the study.

Urban Systems says in the report going to council the spray park location was preferred as in some ways it would be like killing two birds with one stone. It ties closely into the improvements that are already proposed in Riverside Park such as repairing the spray park, renovating washrooms and change rooms near the beach and lighting upgrades to name a few.

The addition of the skating rink will provide a year-round activity space in Riverside Park, the report says. 

Other areas up for consideration were Riverside Park's concession area, McArthur Island near the skateboard park, McDonald Park and the Downtown Civic Plaza.

The cost is currently estimated at nearly $3 million for the outdoor skating rink including the purchase of a Zamboni. Assuming a 16-week operating period, the annual operating cost is estimated to be $120,000. This figure considers the costs of energy, maintenance, snow clearing, staff wages and propane.

The recommendation to council by chief administrative officer David Trawin is that council authorize including the outdoor skating rink in the application for the Community Culture and Recreation Grant Program.

Kamloops Outdoor Skating Association said in a Facebook post they are excited for the council's decision tomorrow. The group has been trying to get an outdoor skating rink in the city for three years.


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