The Jean-Marc Lalonde are­na will not be sold

Vision (Canada) - - News - MAR­TIN BRUNETTE mar­tin.brunette@eap.on.ca

The Jean-Marc Lalonde Are­na is no lon­ger for sale. Cla­rence-Ro­ck­land coun­cil de­ci­ded not to go for­ward with the pro­cess to sell the buil­ding.

“We’re de­fi­ni­te­ly not sel­ling the are­na,” said Mayor Guy Des­jar­din du­ring a phone in­ter­view on Tues­day. “We will take a look at a re­port from the com­mu­ni­ty ser­vice de­part­ment, but it’s not for sale.”

“If we de­cide to sell the are­na or close it, we will real­ly re­gret it even five years from now.”

- Jean-Marc Lalonde

Ins­tead, the city will go back to its ori­gi­nal plan to find ano­ther use for the buil­ding which stands on Du Parc Ave­nue in Ro­ck­land. The coun­cil will still, ho­we­ver, look at the re­port sub­mit­ted by the com­mu­ni­ty ser­vices on the eva­lua­tion of the buil­ding.

“That the mu­ni­ci­pal coun­cil he­re­by man­dates the Di­rec­tor of Com­mu­ni­ty Ser­vices to sub­mit a de­tai­led re­port on the pos­si­bi­li­ties of the change of the use of the buil­ding […]” read the re­so­lu­tion adop­ted at the Jan. 26 re­gu­lar coun­cil mee­ting.

Jean-Marc Lalonde him­self war­ned the coun­cil of the short-term ne­ga­tive im­pact of let­ting the are­na go.

“Our are­na is still in bet­ter condi­tion than ma­ny others in the re­gion,” he said. “If we de­cide to sell the are­na or close it, we will real­ly re­gret it even five years from now. This are­na was once home to the Ro­ck­land Nats and the tro­phy they won in the past is still at the Ho­ckey Hall of Fame in To­ron­to”

The city coun­cil will again ask the com­mu­ni­ty ser­vices to come up with ideas on what to do with the are­na that has been clo­sed for a lit­tle over three years since the ope­ning of the Ca­na­dian In­ter­na­tio­nal Ho­ckey Aca­de­my in Sep­tem­ber 2011.

At that time, the mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty was strug­gling with the idea of clo­sing the ice pad at the are­na since it had an ex­cess with the new are­na. Cla­rence-Ro­ck­land was then left with four ice pads. It was dif­fi­cult to jus­ti­fy a fourth ice pad wi­thout ha­ving an im­pact on the other are­na’s re­ve­nue.

The sur­face was still used by va­rious sports groups, in­clu­ding the Ca­pi­tal City Der­by Dolls roller der­by club from Ottawa, lo­cal ball ho­ckey groups, as well as the 832 Twillick Air Ca­det Squa­dron.

“The pu­blic will once again be in­vi­ted to com­ment and sub­mit their own ideas du­ring open mee­ting,” said Mayor Des­jar­dins.

The are­na has not had an ice pad since sep­tem­ber 2011

Jean-Marc Lalonde

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