Club members express concern over Pat O'Donnell Civic Center


July 10, 2019


Ironwood — Members of Ice Crystals Figure Skating Club and Polar Bear Hockey sought information about the status of the Pat O’ Donnell Civic Center from Ironwood’s City Commission during Monday night’s meeting.

Mat Sommer, board member of the civic center and youth hockey league, said the closure of the civic center is affecting both clubs.

“I cannot stress enough how important this building is to us as club members and taxpayers,” he said.

Robin Phillips, president of the Ice Crystals, said the clubs should be kept informed about the rehabilitation efforts being done at the civic center.

“We have not even been able to get in the building in order to check our stuff to see if it was damaged by water,” she said, addressing the board.

The group needs to begin planning for next season and there has been no word from the civic center, she said.

“There’s no voicemail attached to civic center’s phone anymore,” she said.

Rebecca Samson, vice president of the Ice Crystals board and head coach, said the club has years of accumulated costumes in the center along with spotlights which are used by a few different clubs.

“It has been 4 months with no movement other than what we were just told and a lot of talk and inspection, but nothing actually going,” she said.

Samson said planning for next year is critical so the club can retain its members along with its standing in the U.S. Figure Skating.

“If we are not able to have ice this year and we loose all those memberships,” she said, “then we loose club status with U.S Figure Skating.”

Steve Wright, project manager for U.P. Engineers & Architects, said the city’s insurance company hired his company in February to inspect the building.

“It was pretty obvious that the damage was there and roughly about half of the roof system itself has either crimped or the purlins have rolled,” he said.

Going through building documents Wright discovered the civic center was not built “close to current code.”

The damage led to finding most of the building also does not meet current standards and Wright said the “biggest one being the roof trusses.”

He said discussions were had to try and fix the building in order to “salvage ice skating and hockey for this year.”

The civic center is 240 feet long by 120 feet wide and Wright said contractors are concerned about going in the building without shoring it up first. Another area which could be problematic is not dropping something on the slab and damaging the cooling system in the floor, he explained.

“If that happens, basically you’re looking at a much incurred additional cost for replacing that slab and system as well as a time delay at that point,” he said.

Wright said some of the materials needed for structural repairs can take up to two months to be delivered.

To have a chance to have the project completed this year, he said the process needs to be design and build versus design, bid and then build.

“It’s our intention to sit down with the insurance company and with Scott and whoever else in the building department and discuss between the different proposals we have from the contractors,” he said. “(to determine) What is the best option moving forward.”

In other business, the board approved:

—Awarding $38,900 to Miller’s Roof Coatings to re-roof the Department of Public Works building.

—The Rural Development Pay package of $50,113 for Phase 4 Utility Water Portion and $58,484 for Phase 4 Utility Project Sewer Portion.

—Authorizing the city manager and the city attorney to negotiate a contract with the insurance company and contractor to make repairs to the civic center.

—Scheduling a public meeting to vacate a portion of North-South alley in Block 1, Sunnyside Addition, near E Sunnyside Avenue and North Douglas Boulevard.

—Reappointing Linda Jindrich, Randy Kirchhoff and Sam Davey to the Parks and Recreation Committee.

—Appointing Jake Ring and reappointing Nancy Korpela to Ironwood’s Downtown Development Authority.


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