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Boca Raton reviewing proposals for ice rink; downtown

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Boca Raton reviewing proposals for ice rink; downtown

Looks like FAU students will have something else to do near campus soon:

From the Palm Beach Post:

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"City staff will meet Friday to discuss how well each plan meets the preferences the city outlined in January. The building or buildings would house two 85-by-200-foot ice rinks and one 100-by-200-foot Olympic-size rink, all of which would have state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems. The city wouldn't be responsible for building, operating and maintaining the facility, which should have a seating capacity of 400 to 2,000.

Other features the city wants the facility to have include a pro shop with figure skating and hockey equipment and apparel, wireless Internet and a restaurant with a dining view of the ice.

The city has designated about 6 acres it owns north of Spanish River Boulevard between Broken Sound Boulevard and the Spanish River Library for the ice rink facility. It wants a minimum fee discount of 10 percent for its residents and employees as well as some form of compensation for providing the land."

Additionally, Boca wants to redevelop its downtown area (from Mizner Park to Camino Real) to be more cohesive, lively and pedestrain friendly. They're looking at downtown Atlantic Avenue in Delray as an example… restaurants and such with awnings, outdoor bands, people eating under umbrellas, that sort of thing. Here's a before/after example:

(you can see more drawings at http://www.ci.boca-raton.fl.us/dev/pdf/CharPres072407.pdf)

Surprisingly, the feedback had a lot of comments about putting in stores that were more reasonable for middle-class people. Comments were made about changing the south end of Mizner Park – where a strip mall is right now – into an area for college students, with low-price eateries and clubs. I won't hold my breath that Boca will accomodate us but it would be great if they did.

That's going to take years and years to develop though. Don't know if you noticed but Wellington has built up into a ritzy area and now Boynton Beach is adding a huge fancy urban area with stores, housing, Best Buy, etc. This "new urbanism" trend is hitting South Florida all over the place.

Also, don't remember if I mentioned this – FAU got a boost in CITF funding so we're going to be adding an outdoor leisure pool to the new Recreation Center. They want it to be big and interesting, considering various ideas like slides, grottos, vortexes, waterfalls and even a small lazy river. Eric Hawkes, the guy in charge of Campus Rec, is also working on a rollerskating rink and/or skate park down the line.

The outlook is good for future FAU students.

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