Removal of ice pad in Dartmouth, N.S. causes scheduling conflicts for a number of sports
The removal of an ice surface at the RBC Centre in Dartmouth, N.S., is causing ice-time scheduling issues in the Halifax Regional Municipality.
The ice surface at the centre was removed in order to make space for lacrosse players. This was done after the lacrosse playing-surface at the Gerald B. Gray Memorial Arena in Dartmouth was taken over in order to make room for an emergency shelter for the homeless.
"This needed to happen because the Gray Arena is currently being occupied by Out of The Cold as an emergency shelter for the homeless,” says Brynn Budden, spokesperson for HRM.
According to some local senior hockey players, scheduling time on an ice pad was already difficult before the change.
“It’s hard on seniors because sometimes our ice time will be cut out,” says Mike Acker, a senior hockey player.
There are 1,500 players registered for lacrosse in HRM, some of whom are preparing for major competitions.
“We are in the Canada Games. We are in national tournaments and our teams can only basically practice in whatever we can get,” says Steven Brown, president of the Wolves Lacrosse Association.
The cost of removing the ice at the RBC Centre is $5,000.
Once the floor is dry, the pad at the centre will be ready for games or practice.
”There’s 30-some odd rinks in HRM. We’re only asking for one,” Brown says.
Budden admits there is a shortage of ice available during the peak times of 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., but she adds there are lots of options outside of those hours, and priority will be given to rescheduling children's sports.
“It is important to note that there will be no loss of ice time for youth throughout this process, so it’s adult groups that are mostly affected by this right now,” says Budden.
The ice pad at the RBC Centre will be gone until March of 2022.
HRM is considering giving refunds to groups whose rescheduled ice times cannot be used.