Radnor Township’s administration is proposing a feasibility study for an indoor recreation facility that may or may not include multiple ice rinks.
One of the possible partners in the project could be Comcast-Spectacor, the parent company of the Philadelphia Flyers, Wells Fargo Center, and Comcast SportsNet.
On Monday the Board of Commissioners discussed, but did not vote on, hiring someone to conduct a “Phase I” study at a cost of almost $50,000.
While no commissioner said they would vote against a recreation center, a few said they did not approve of Comcast-Spectacor conducting a study that would essentially lead the township to hire them to build and operate the facility, which could be a fifth “Flyers Skate Zone.”
The indoor sports complex generally includes two ice rinks, concrete based rink, indoor track, gymnasiums and a small fitness center. There are currently Flyers Skate Zones in New Jersey (Voorhees, Pennsauken and Atlantic City) and Northeast Philadelphia.
Some of the board members also said that the township should not be paying for the rec facility study.
Township manager Bob Zienkowski said that public/private partnerships like the one proposed are a “huge win” for the township, which gets amenities without having to run them.
The township currently leases the Sulpezio Gym from the Radnor Township School District, but that building costs $30,000 in annual utility expenses and will “never be an adequate recreation facility. The amenities just aren’t there,” Zienkowski said.
Board president Elaine Paul Schaefer said the square footage needed for such a center exacerbates the problem of where to locate it.
“This feasibility study needs to cover what were looking for, and I’m not sure if we decided what we are looking for,” she said.
Commissioner Don Curley added that he would like to see grass roots support for such a rec center from the community.