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Larchmont Families Say Ice Rink Fixes Worth the $1.8M

MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- The Mamaroneck Town Council approved bond resolutions at its Wednesday meeting for six capital projects in 2012, which include $432,000 for the first phase of the Hommocks Ice Rink improvement project.

Brian Carr-Smith also approves of the expense, which will total $1.8 million for all three phases. The Larchmont real-estate agent's children Kaitlyn, Connor and Caroline take weekly skating lessons there, and his family uses the facility on a regular basis.

"I think it's an asset to the community," said Carr-Smith, as he tied his daughter Kaitlyn's skates for skating practice Thursday. "You also have Friday night skate night, which we come here for a lot."

The Hommocks Ice Rink is 22 years old and in need of several improvements, according to a consultant the town hired to evaluate the facility in 2009 when it turned 20 years old.

"When the three phases are complete, we'll have done almost a complete rehab of the facility," said Stephen Altieri, town administrator.

Those measures include replacing the ice-making equipment, all the mechanical systems and lighting, and making roof repairs. The first phase will focus on replacing the dehumidification system and ventilation system, as well as the installation of a new fire alarm system and new lighting over the ice. The next two phases will include replacing the dasher boards and the ice-making equipment.

All together, the town will spend about $1.8 million on the Hommocks Ice Rink when the bonds reach maturity in 15 to 20 years, including $830,000 for the second phase - to be done in 2013 - and about $600,000 for the third phase - to be done in 2014.

The projects were spread out over three years to minimize the amount of time the ice rink is closed. The town hopes to begin the first phase of the project, along with the other five 2012 capital projects, in March, Altieri said.

Janine DiCarlo's two teenage children may have outgrown the ice rink, but learned how to skate there. She spent a lot of time at the ice rink with her family, especially on Friday Night Skate Night.

"I think it's a great idea because I think it's a nice part of the town," said DiCarlo, regarding the town board's decision to make improvements. "People spend a lot to live in Larchmont for those reasons."

The ice rink operates on its own revenue alone, and doesn't take any property tax dollars, Altieri said. The bond resolution for the ice rink, as well as the other five 2012 capital projects, passed unanimously.

"Although it sounds like a lot of money, and it is, the ice rink is also a very big profit center for the town, and a beloved amenity," said Nancy Seligson, town supervisor.

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