The Skatium in Waitsfield is set to receive a 5.37-acre land donation that will give it ownership of the land where the rink currently sits.
Additionally, the Skatium board is seeking a planned unit development
permit from the town's Development Review Board to create a
multi-phased project for the rink that includes creating a closed arena
to house the rink.
The DRB was reviewing the proposal as The Valley Reporter went to press on November 23. Currently the Skatium exists on land that is owned by the Mad River Green Partners. Mad River Green Partners and the Skatium, represented by Don Swain of Landplan Inc., are proposing to subdivide a 10.37-acre parcel with a 5.37-acre parcel to be donated to the Skatium by the Mad River Green Partners.
The proposal the DRB is reviewing includes phasing the project, with the first phase being the replacement of the existing ice surface with a concrete slab with refrigeration piping, and relocating the adjacent buildings (zamboni shed, storage shed, portolet enclosure and dressing rooms).
The next phases involve constructing an arena structure, outdoor skating surface and mixed use structures. The arena structure may be phased, with the first phase being a roof enclosure to protect the ice surface, without interior services. Those interior services such as locker rooms, a concession stand, etc. require adequate water and septic capacity.
In addition to the conditional use review criteria, the project is subject to wetlands regulation as the property is in a designated Class II wetland.
The Skatium has approval from the Vermont State Wetlands office for the current ice surface replacement plan as permitted by the town and the state's Act 250 development review process.
"The proposed phase one plan does not impact additional wetland. No construction on the wetland is proposed in the phase two plan. However, a conditional use determination is expected to be required by the state due to the additional parking shown in the vicinity of the wetlands," Swain wrote in the proposal to the DRB.
Access to the parcel is proposed along the existing driveway to the Skatium, which would be widened to meet the subdivision standards. No through access to the former Mad River Canoe Road at the incubator industrial site is proposed.
"The applicant believes that a through connection would encourage truck and additional auto traffic, which would be incompatible with recreational use of this site, particularly by children," Swain noted.
The second phase of the project will allow for emergency vehicle access over a sidewalk restricted by a moveable closure. Parking is envisioned for 50 or more cars with overflow parking available along the entrance drive.