The Jean-Marc Lalonde arena will not be sold
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