Hastings Civic Arena

Hastings Civic Arena

The Governor’s list of State bonding recommendations includes $2.235 million for the Civic Arena improvements. If approved, the City would be responsible for the balance of the $4.47 million project.

The money would go towards improving the energy efficiency of the facility as well as bolstering the roof to prevent water intrusion. The current 23-year-old roof covering the west rink is flat and has a perpetual leak issue, requiring multiple repairs, the most recent of which was done three years ago. 

The City is also exploring options for adding roof-top solar panels. A 160 kW array on the West rink roof was recommended, after replacing the roof with a modified built-up roofing system.

Like the roof structure, the Civic Arena’s refrigeration system is outdated. The facility relies on an R-22 freon refrigeration system, which can no longer be produced or imported under EPA guidelines. The age of the system makes its maintenance and upkeep increasingly difficult and expensive.   

Without converting to an alternate refrigeration system, the Civic Arena could be required to close. A 2017 study by Apex Efficiency Systems, as well as a 2021 update, recommended an ammonia-based refrigeration system, which requires building modifications.

The Civic Arena’s east rink with the wooden roof was originally constructed in 1974 and the west rink with the flat roof and extended lobby were built in 1998 through a joint effort with the Hastings School District. It is widely used by youth and adults for ice skating, lessons and hockey tournaments. More than 125,000 people visit the arena annually.

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