NEWTOWN, Conn. -- Supporters of an ice rink planned for Newtown met with a group last week to learn about a feasibility study underway for a new community center for the town.
Newtown Ice Arena posted on its Facebook page that it met with the Sports Facility Advisory and Management Group about the study, which is expected to take six weeks. “We are confident once it's finalized it will show how well Newtown is suited for an ice rink,’’ the post said on the Facebook page.
According to the hockey rink supporters, Newtown families spend more than $500,000 a year outside of town on activities at ice skating rinks.
Newtown voters approved the community center in April. A hockey rink was not part of the plans for the approved center.
The ice rink group said a rink could be used for graduation ceremonies, concerts and expositions in addition to ice skating events. “Bringing a rink into Newtown opens the door for new members while offering a home for the current members which would bring a tremendous amount of revenue back to the town,’’ the post said.
The proposed community center will be built at Fairfield Hills, adjacent to the Newtown Youth Academy and Fitness Center. A commission recommended the community center include multipurpose rooms for all ages and a 50-meter pool. The proposal passed at a referendum earlier this year. Architects and designers are now planning the structure.
A $10 million gift from the GE Foundation and $5 million from the town’s Capital Improvement Plan will be used to fund construction for the center. GE will contribute $5 million to operate the facility after it is built.
Newtown residents who want to contribute data to support the hockey rink can contact Paul Esposito at firstname.lastname@example.org or respond on the ice arena’s Facebook page.
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