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Mohawk 4 ice centre looking to expand

Arena operator looking to add four gymnasiums, golf simulators

 By Mark Newman, News Staff 

The Mohawk 4 Ice Centre could have a 30,000 square-foot addition by this time next year.

East Mountain councillor Tom Jackson confirmed Nustadia Recreation is looking at building as many as four gymnasiums on the south-west side of the four pad arena onMountain Brow Boulevardas part of a private-public partnership with the city.

“It’s all exploratory,” said Jackson, whose motion at city council last August authorized city recreation staff to have those discussions.

Any agreement would likely be similar to the arrangement the city made with Nustadia 10 years ago.

That deal saw the city hall put up $12 million for the building of the arena, which Nustadia began paying back when the facility opened in 2005, with an interest rate of 5.25 percent over 20 years.

“So at the end of the day the city would not be out any dollars,” Jackson said.

Nustadia has built and run a number of recreation facilities acrossNorth Americain partnership arrangements with municipalities.

It operates the east Mountain arena on the city’s behalf and picks up all administrative costs.

Ed Pavao, vice president of business development for Nustadia, noted they are also looking at an indoor golf centre with golf simulation machines.

He said a business plan should be ready for the city by early January.

The price tag is expected to be in the millions of dollars

Pavao said they are contemplating two expansion options.

A bricks and mortar addition and a less expensive fabric bubble, both would include the gyms and change rooms.

Pavao said there are floorball, basketball and volleyball groups in the city that are willing to pay to use the new space.

“These groups are struggling to find practice and game facilities and tournament times,” said Pavao, who added the private sector participation could include purchasing the naming rights for the arena and the new building.

Jackson said he wants to meet with the user groups to confirm their participation and alert area residents of the potential expansion before the project proceeds past the exploratory stage.

He is adamant that any expansion would not affect the existing baseball diamonds on site.

Pavao said if the city gives the plan the green light early next year, construction could begin in the spring and wrap by the end of 2014.


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