By Claire Schlaman
For The Signal
With Santa Clarita City Council members voting to acquire the Ice Station Valencia after the pandemic closed the facility indefinitely, plans are beginning to be made as to what the ice rink could become.
“We see long-term being able to expand the use beyond just the ice sports — to where we could offer opportunities for the business community or opportunities for large gatherings, for a Chamber of Commerce meeting or a local nonprofit that may want to have an event,” said Assistant City Manager Frank Oviedo.
With a 93,000-square-foot venue, the possibilities for additional uses have come up, including those in the movie and television business.
“We see that there’s more that can be done, and through the city, we do so much event permitting that there’s opportunities for filming,” said Oviedo.
Beyond filming and business opportunities, the property is also being looked at as an entertainment venue for concerts, dances and graduations. Additionally, other sports such as basketball and soccer were presented as potential uses at the City Council meeting held to discuss future plans.
The ice station consists of a floor level of 71,000 square feet and a mezzanine level that has 21,000 square feet, as well as a restaurant.
As fewer opportunities have become available for future development, city officials were looking for a convention-like space when Ice Station Valencia went up for sale. The council in August voted in favor of purchasing the 4.39-acre venue for $14.2 million.
“Knowing that this was a unique opportunity for the community at large, we looked at this space because it came on the market and they did want to sell. Buildings like that don’t always come on the market, and it was a perfect-time-and-place type of situation,” said Oviedo.
The city will post a request for proposal to hire an operator for oversight on the Ice Station.
Public health orders have halted the rink from opening, and there is not a set date as to when it will open again. “Our goal is to be ready when the public health order is lifted.” said Oviedo.
Once opened, safety guidelines will still be required, such as social distancing and wearing masks.
A City Council meeting is scheduled 3 p.m. Sept. 15 to further discuss plans for the ice rink. Those who wish to offer suggestions or watch the video can visit https://santaclarita.zoom.us/j/96486904848.