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Clayton council shifts focus to arena upgrades following Frink’s sale

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CLAYTON — The town was unsuccessful in securing state funds to improve the Cerow Recreation Park Arena last year, but local officials say they haven’t dropped the ball.

Clayton had applied for a $400,000 state Community Development Block Grant last summer to modernize the aging East Line Road facility based on community feedback.

“We’re going to be aggressive on this. It’s been on the back burner for two years because of the Frink development project, but we always have been committed to improving the arena,” said Robert W. Cantwell III, a town councilman who is spearheading the effort.

Aiming to send out requests for proposals to architects this summer, Town Council members are putting together a wish list that primarily focuses on building new locker rooms, making bathroom upgrades and adding showers, which would be used year-round and not just in the summer when the arena pool is open.

The town also hopes to modify the front entrance and install double doors, add a new concession area, replace the boards around the ice rink and perhaps improve heating in the arena stands.

While the proposed project does not have an official price tag yet, Clayton officials estimate the work would amount to about $1.5 million.

By modernizing the 40-year-old arena, which was built with funds provided by the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, the town hopes to get more swimmers, ice skaters and hockey players to use the facility.

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