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Lawrence library board of trustees wary of ice rink idea for Vermont Street

March 17, 2014

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The board of trustees for the Lawrence Public Library expressed uncertainty about placing an ice skating rink in between its permanent location and new parking garage on Vermont Street Monday.

The plot of land in question, which is owned by the city, is expected to be used as an area for outdoor concerts and programs hosted by the library. Several trustees expressed concern that a skating rink, even one that is disassembled for the warmer months, would detract from that.

"What does matter is there's an aesthetic that goes with this library and its going to change the space and the balance," trustee Christopher Burger said.

The board approved a resolution saying that "changes to the space should not significantly negatively affect the overall library space or function" and that the "space should support multiple uses."

Nevertheless, trustees also acknowledged potential benefits of the rink.

"It has a nice community draw to it," trustee David Vance said.

In February, the Journal-World reported that the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department planned to spend about $1,200 to have the architects of the Lawrence Public Library expansion determine how the area between the library and the new parking structure could be modified to accommodate a seasonal rink.

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