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City of Ithaca News

Posted on: May 27, 2022

Cass Park Arena – Rink Enclosure

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Cass Park Arena – Rink Enclosure  

Long awaited rink enclosure project has begun in May 2022! 

The City of Ithaca is pleased to announce that construction on the Cass Park Arena, located at 701 Taughannock Blvd., Ithaca, NY has begun this month. The project will fully enclose the rink providing de-humidification and shelter that will improve ice conditions, lengthen the ice skating season, provide a year round community space for events and programming, and greatly enhance the user experience including the addition of new spectator bleachers. 

The City has awarded contracts to Bouley Associates, Inc. from Auburn for general construction; AFT Mechanical, LLC from Elmira for HVAC construction; and Knapp Electric, Inc. from Auburn for electric construction. The City’s architect/engineer on the project is Stantec Consulting Services, LLC from Rochester. Taitem Engineering, PC from Ithaca is the City’s commissioning consultant. 

The Cass arena enclosure has been a focus of the Ithaca Youth Bureau, the Engineering division of the Department of Public Works, the Friends of the Ithaca Youth Bureau, community members and businesses for more than seven years to raise funds to support the project. Funding for this project includes City funds, a New York State Regional Economic Development Council grant from the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, a state grant through former NYS Assembly Member Barbara Lifton’s office, and community fund raising effort led by the Friends of the Ithaca Youth Bureau.   

The rink opened in November 1972; the enclosure of the open-air facility is an indispensable piece of a multi-phased plan to update Cass Park to serve the community for another 50 years. To date, the City has already replaced the refrigeration system and concrete slab, replaced and extended the roof, and replaced the lighting and sound system. The enclosure is an important step to modernize the facility; lobby, locker room and rest room renovations are also needed in the future.   

The Cass Park Rink is home to Ithaca Youth Hockey Association (IYHA), Ithaca High School Varsity Hockey teams, Ithaca Adult Hockey Association, IYHA and Tompkins Girls Hockey Association regional tournaments, Ithaca Sirens, Youth Bureau skating lessons and public skating, Cass Park Summer Day Camp, roller skating and many more recreational activities enjoyed by the community.   

Ithaca Mayor Laura Lewis adds, “Cass Park is a hub of community activity and one of Ithaca’s finest treasures that serves people of all ages and abilities.  With support from Friends of the Ithaca Youth Bureau, NYS grants and City of Ithaca project funds, we will see the Cass Arena enclosed this year!”    

Jim D’Alterio, IYB Deputy Director, says, “The Enclose Cass project, as with any construction, will require some adjustments and flexibility to normal operations but we look forward to a successful pool and summer camp season. Cass Park Day Camp will continue to meet and use a portion of the arena surface for its meetings and daily activities.  Summer Roller Skating will be on hold; however, we are looking for an alternate site.  Please check our Facebook page and website for updates. Construction is due to be completed in time for the 2022-23 ice season.”   

The Ithaca Youth Bureau, established in 1948 provides youth development and recreational programs and facilities for the Ithaca and surrounding communities.  Cass Park is a 138 acre park that includes the arena, Olympic size swimming pool, tennis courts, playing fields, picnic pavilions and playgrounds. 

 For more information and updates go to www.casspark.org 

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