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N. E. Sports Center expansion work progresses

N. E. Sports Center expansion work progresses

METRO WEST DAILY NEWS – The 88,830-square-foot expansion of the New England Sports Center remains on track to be completed early this spring.

The project: The City Council this summer signed off on a special permit allowing New England Sports Management, which operates the center, to expand. The expansion will include two new ice rinks, 110 more parking spaces and potentially a second restaurant, said Wes Tuttle, general manager of the New England Sports Center.

Timeline: Construction crews recently installed footings, plumbing and the foundation for the new rinks. Tuttle expects work on the last foundation wall will be completed in the next few days and crews will then begin work paving the parking lot. “We’re very, very happy with the progress,” said Tuttle. “It’s exciting. We’re anxious to get it done.” Crews cleared numerous trees over the summer where the rinks and parking lot will be located. Tuttle hopes the new rinks will open in February or March.

Growth: The expansion will provide additional opportunities, such as allowing more teams to play at the complex, attracting bigger national and global hockey tournaments and the addition of a curling club. Tuttle and Sudbury Firefighter Mike Matros are also organizing the Hero Cup hockey tournament, which will bring teams of firefighters from across the world to the center to compete.

Economic benefit: Susanne Morreale-Leeber, president and CEO of the Marlborough Regional Chamber of Commerce, characterized the center as a key resource to helping city businesses flourish. Morreale-Leeber expects the ongoing expansion will increase business to city hotels, restaurants and shops. “The New England Sports Center has been really key all these years in helping our community stay stable,” she said. “With the expansion, they’re going to be able to attract large competitions and that means more business for our business people. It’s good for the business community.”

The facility: Built in 1994 with four ice rinks, the New England Sports Center has undergone a handful of expansions in recent years. In 2005 the facility added a fifth rink and expanded again in 2010 to add a sixth to meet the growing demand for ice time. The complex also features a pro shop, arcade and restaurant. The center has hosted numerous national and regional events during its history.

This article by Jeff Malachoski originally appeared here.