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(VIDEO) City Council to resolve direction on Casper Ice Arena’s second sheet Tuesday

(Casper Ice Arena, Facebook)

CASPER, Wyo. — On Tuesday, the Casper City Council will be asked to give concrete direction as to whether the City of Casper should put money toward a second sheet of ice at the Casper Ice Arena.

User groups have been asking the City Council for years to consider contributing money toward adding a second sheet of ice at the Casper Ice Arena via a public–private partnership. While the City Council has kept the door open to possibly supporting the proposal, there has been concern as to whether the City of Casper is financially in a position to pay into the project and clear direction has been repeatedly postponed.

During the Tuesday, Jan. 10 work session, the new City Council, which welcomed several new members this month, will be asked to give clear direction regarding the ~$13.2 million expansion of the Casper Ice Arena. City staff have identified some options that would enable the City of Casper to contribute about $4.4 million to the project. There are options to either use money the city has on hand or to utilize debt financing, a memo from city staff states.

The City Council will also discuss several other topics during the work session:

  • Whether to install surveillance cameras and emergency phones at fire stations:
    • The estimated cost of the project to add six cameras at each station plus a centralized server for all the stations is $57,000.
    • Annual maintenance cost is estimated at $900.
  • Whether to amend the definition of “flagpole” in the Casper Municipal Code:
    • The new definition would reduce the minimum width of the flagpole portion of residential flag lots from 24 feet to 12 feet.
    • This amendment could allow the city to subdivide underutilized, deep and narrow residential lots, increasing practical land use densities and reducing urban sprawl. However, there may also be potential downsides, such as an increase in the number of curb cuts and a decrease in available street parking, a staff memo states.
  • An amendment to the Fiscal Year 2022 budget.
    • The amendment would add $3,850,947 of additional expenditure authority to the budget, including funding for projects and disbursements previously authorized by the council, new expenditures and projects, and new appropriations with offsetting revenues.
  • The development of the WYO Sports Ranch facility near the Events Center:
    • The City Council will be asked to consider modifying the front-yard setback requirement in the PH (Park Historic) zoning district from 30 feet to 15 feet.
    • The construction of the sports complex requires a setback of 30 feet, but the recently approved platting of the Events Center property as part of the North Platte River Park No. 2 Subdivision has caused the newly established Events Drive right-of-way to encroach 15 feet into the area where the complex is to be built. As a result, it has been difficult to meet the 30-foot setback requirement.
  • Review of the Wyoming Association of Municipalities’ 2023 Wyoming Legislative Agenda:
    • The agenda includes seven priorities, including supporting the passage of several liquor license–related bills, advocating for an increase in direct distribution, and finding a representative or senator to sponsor the Amendment A program as an interim topic for the 2024 legislature.

Further details about the work session discussion items are available in the City Council’s work packet:

The work session can be streamed via the City of Casper’s YouTube channel: