Posted By: Camila Orti
Lincoln is one step closer to getting a new ice rink.
The University of Nebraska Board of Regents approved plans for the Breslow Ice Center.
It's a project that has been in the works for seven years, and a topic of debate for the last several months. Friday morning, it passed unanimously.
"It's a good first step and I'm excited about where it's going," Regent Tim Clare said.
Clare says it was a number of things that convinced his colleagues since the board's last meeting.
"We're going to hire a third party that has experience in running ice facilities to professionally manage the facility," Clare said.
Plus, the West Haymarket Joint Public Agency has agreed to donate up to $2 million for the $11 million center. With former state auditor John Breslow's $7 million donation, the remaining $2 million will be raised from private sources.
"I think it would be really awesome to have some games in Lincoln," 7-year-old Lola Reid said.
Lola plays hockey for the Junior Stars. She and her father testified in favor of the ice center, insisting that demand for ice time in the city will make the project profitable.
"I realize the pressure the kids are under, I mean my daughter has to practice in the hallway because there's not enough time on the ice," Brian Reid said.
The original renderings show two sheets of ice, but the plan, for now, is to build just one.
"Let's walk before we run," Clare said.
The 700-seat Breslow Ice Center will be owned and operated by the university. It will be located between the Pinnacle Bank Arena and Haymarket Park.
One citizen did testify against the construction of the center at Friday's meeting. He said it's being built in a floodplain, which could endanger surrounding neighborhoods.
Construction is proposed to start in July.