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Norwich ice rink shut down by mechanical problem

By Claire Bessette

Published May 07. 2013 4:00AM

Norwich – The Norwich Municipal Ice Rink was forced to close again Monday night after a mechanical failure in the recently repaired aging cooling equipment, rink authority Chairman Francois “Pete” Desaulniers said.

“We are evaluating the system to determine the extent of the repair and estimated down time,” a brief press release issued late Monday announcing the closure said.

Desaulniers estimated the rink could be closed for two weeks.

The rink was closed for a month after a Feb. 13 major equipment failure that caused an ammonia leak and forced evacuation of the building.

Temporary repairs to the nearly 20-year-old equipment were expected to last several years and buy time for the Ice Rink Authority to consider bid proposals to replace the cooling system. Those bids are due Wednesday at 3 p.m. in the city purchasing office.

The closure reversed what would have been the first positive budget year in about a decade, turning it into an anticipated deficit that will be added to the $328,296 debt the authority owes the city.

The cost of the new problem – as well as more lost revenue from the closure – is unknown at this time.

c.bessette@theday.com

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