Crystal Bay Club ice rink plan hits snag
August 17, 2005
CRYSTAL BAY – The Ice Foundation’s hope to have the skating rink moved to the parking garage at the Crystal Bay Club has another obstacle to overcome, according to CBC owner Roger Norman, after a meeting he had with Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Director John Singlaub, Deputy Director Jerry Wells and Assistant Agency Counsel Jordan Kahn.
“The TRPA said that to expand any of my public areas would constitute also expanding my gaming area, which by the TRPA compact, I’m not allowed to do,” Norman said. “Since we have owned the club, gaming space has actually decreased.”
The plan was to place the 80 foot-by-200 foot rink on the parking garage and use it for, not just an ice rink, but a roller rink and concert venue.
Singlaub said he felt the meeting with Norman was very encouraging and was puzzled by Norman’s view of what went on.
“I really feel it was positive for the project,” Singlaub said. “I thought everyone felt that by working together we should be able to get the project through the process.”
The matter of whether Norman would be expanding his gaming area was turned over to the NTRPA, the Nevada side of the federal agency that oversees gaming issues for the agency.
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Pam Wilcox of the NTRPA said that the agency has yet to receive any requests for permits on the project, but is aware of the inherent problems Norman could face.
“I was in on a conference call with Mr. Norman a couple of weeks ago and, while I think the rink is a great idea and needed in the area, there are a few issues in the compact that have to be addressed,” Wilcox said. “The compact prohibits the expansion of private areas in the casinos and even though the parking garage is considered a private area as it stands, putting in the rink makes it a public area and expanding that area goes against the compact.”
Wilcox said that it would take a decision by the NTRPA board to okay the project.
“It’s really up to the board, I can only go by the rules as stated in the compact,” Wilcox said.
Although there was a meeting scheduled for this month, it had to be rescheduled for Sept. 29, to allow more members of the board to be present.
“I think TRPA is aware of the fact that whatever we’ve done has gone over the top,” Norman said. “But they have to understand that we have the same goals – to make the project economically feasible and beautiful at the same time. I really hope we can work it out. The community really wants it to happen.”