It is my opinion that a new ice arena should not be situated on town land across from the Scarborough Public Library.

Building the hockey rink there will: deprive the library of overflow parking for its well-attended, free events; eliminate two basketball courts that provide free unorganized exercise; increase vehicle traffic in the area, and require filling wetlands and exacerbating drainage problems.

The Scarborough Public Library serves a greater purpose and more residents in town than an ice arena ever will. Before the town invests in a hockey rink that will serve a limited number of people who must pay for access, we should invest in an expansion of the library.

I have organized public events and have found the library is the only building where I can reliably schedule space. Long-scheduled events have been bumped from school buildings and the Town Hall, even after invitations were printed. The library is always a gracious, accommodating host. The library serves the greater good. I’m not so sure about a hockey rink.

I also have concerns about the financial feasibility of the ice arena. Have town councilors seen a fundraising feasibility study? Have they seen a detailed business plan? Scarborough residents should have more information on the long-term viability of this project.

An ice arena will provide limited use for a limited number of people. The Scarborough Public Library serves us all. I believe another site should be found for an ice arena, a site that won’t be detrimental to our fine library.

Susan DeWitt Wilder

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