I just got this from the General Manager of the Fredericton Youth Hockey Association concerning the ill-advised proposal of the City of Fredericton to close the York Arena for a "trial" year.
We aren't stupid though. Once they close it for a year the bean counters will say "Look! The hockey association survived for a whole year without the York Arena! Let's rip it down now."
No matter how much the hockey association suffers and grinds along painfully for that "trial" year, the bean counters will ignore it and push for demolition.
I would like to think that among my friends on Fredericton Council there will be enough with common sense to vote against this.
Here's today's letter:
Please see the attached letter regarding the current status of the York Arena. We encourage all members to contact their Councillor and inform them of the negative impacts this would have on our association.
PS – Online registration will be available on Tuesday, August 5th after the holiday (for returning members only.) In-House registration will be happening Sept. 11 – 6-8pm, Sept. 12 – 6-9pm and Sept. 13 – 9am-12pm @ Willie O’Ree Place.
Yours in hockey,
Fredericton Youth Hockey Association
900 Hanwell Road
Here is the attachment:
Attention: FYHA Membership,
Please be advised that next week City Council will be voting on a trial 1-year shut down of the York Arena. It should be noted that during the 2013-14 season FYHA rented approximately 130 hours per week from the city of Fredericton, 26.5 of these hours were at the York Arena.
The York Arena was our second most used ice surface in 13-14 and holds approximately 57 rentable hours per week. According to our information, the York Arena’s primetime ice usage was at 83% last season with FYHA contributing to 46% of the primetime hours.
If the York Arena is shut down we automatically lose 26.5 hours of ice time, plus additional hours due to the redistribution of available ice times to other user groups impacted by the closure of the York Arena. Prior to the opening of the Grant Harvey Centre, FYHA was receiving approximately 85 hours on a weekly basis and teams were having to travel to rural areas (Nackawic, Stanley, Keswick, Chipman, Minto, etc) for games and practices. A direct loss of 26-plus hours per week would cause for our teams to travel outside the city again and directly hurt our association.
It is safe to say that closing the York Arena, even for a 1-year trail would not only be detrimental to our program and a safety concern for our members but a huge let-down in trying to solve an ice shortage issue in our city. We encourage all members to call or e-mail Mayor Woodside, their Councillor and inform them of the negative outcome this will cause to our association and all children who play winter ice sports.
Yours in Hockey,
Fredericton Youth Hockey Association 900 Hanwell Road, Suite 13 Fredericton, NB E3B 6A2
I suppose we will have to see if common sense prevails or if the bean counting purse string pullers with a lack of foresight will win this.
Even if I didn't have kids that play hockey I would realize that it is not a good idea to close York Arena.
I know however, that those seeking to shut York down will eventually have their way.
They shut the Nashwaaksis Arena and tore it down against public outcry.
The Coliseum was closed up as well.
I realize that I do not pay taxes in the City of Fredericton.
However, New Maryland pays a heck of a lot of money for our residents to be able to play in the City. It's part of a Recreation Agreement between the Village and the City.
Plus, I pay as much as anyone else for hockey registration.
What the City is worried about is the costs of keeping the older arenas open and up to standards.
It's my opinion that the City of Fredericton suck it up and do what it takes to do this.
But that's just me...