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Janesville City Council approves ice equipment; waits for bids

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MARCIA A. NELESEN
December 14, 2011
— The Janesville City Council will decide the scope of renovations at the Janesville Ice Arena when bids come back in February.

The council Monday unanimously voted to purchase geothermal ice-making equipment costing about $1.04 million. The equipment uses water from the pond at Lions Beach to save money in energy.


The equipment is more expensive than originally estimated, and the cost puts the council’s preferred design about $500,000 over budget.


The council has about $1.9 million set aside for renovations. It had hoped to that would pay for an addition for locker rooms, programming space and room for the new equipment.


Now, members must decide whether to scale back the project or borrow more money, depending on bids.


The geothermal equipment fits into the existing mechanical room, so the council could decide against an addition.


Construction would start sometime in March and be completed in early September.


Mike Payne, city engineer, said staff believes the council could resolve the mechanical issues without borrowing more money.


“Every time we talk about the ice arena, there’s people in the community who want to keep it going,” Councilman Tom McDonald said.


“I think the majority of the people understand the benefits … I believe we have to take care of what we have in this community.


“We’re taking care of something that has suffered from years of neglect,” he said.



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