Spokane Journal of Business

Contractors Northwest lands Riverfront Park ice rink project

$6.7 million project poised to get underway this month

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The city of Spokane has selected Coeur d’Alene-based Contractors Northwest Inc. as the general contractor for the new Riverfront Park ice rink and upgrades to the Skyride facility and ticket office.

CNI presented the lowest of three bids, at $6.7 million, to perform the work, says Fianna Dickson, communications manager for the city’s parks department.

The two other bids came from Spokane Valley-based Lydig Construction Inc., which presented a bid of $7.2 million, and Kennewick-based contractor Apollo Inc. came in with a bid of $7.5 million, Dickson says. 

“CNI is a sister company to T LaRievere, so they’re familiar with the area and have already done some work in the area at that location,” she says.

Last November, the city selected Athol, Idaho-based T LaRievere Equipment & Excavation Inc. as the general contractor for the $4.7 million demolition and rebuild of the Howard Street Bridge, also in Riverfront Park.

“That whole area will be a construction zone for the better part of 2017,” Dickson says of the southwest portion of the park.

In November 2014, Spokane voters approved a $64.3 million bond measure that will provide funding for an overhaul of the aging park.

Riverfront Park, which hasn’t seen major improvements since it was constructed for the environmentally themed Expo ’74 world’s fair, attracts between 2 million and 2.5 million visitors per year, city statistics show. 

Construction of the ice rink, called an ice ribbon because of its design, will begin this month. An accompanying skating pond will be located in the grassy area south of the Skyride facility. The ribbon is slated to be 650 feet long and 16 feet wide with slight increases and decreases in elevation, designs for the ribbon show.

Edmonton, Alberta-based Stantec Inc., a design and consulting company with offices in Spokane, designed the ice ribbon, as well as upgrades to the Skyride facility and ticket office.

“We’re looking to open in the fall for ice skating; that’s really our big push right now,” Dickson says.

Also, at the beginning of January, the parks department closed the Looff Carrousel to begin the demolition and rebuild of that building.

Dickson says the city will begin soliciting bids for the Looff Carrousel project this month. NAC Architecture PS, of Spokane, designed the new building, which is expected to make the carousel more visible to the public.

The carousel draws 500,000 riders per year, city statistics show. Demolition of the current carousel building is expected to begin in February.

In the meantime, the carousel rides will be refurbished and stored at another location with the carousel while the new building is being constructed, Dickson says.

 Kevin Blocker
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Reporter Kevin Blocker, a University of Colorado alum, is a rec league basketball addict. At age 47, he still sports a 32-inch vertical leap. He has three children, all of whom are hooked on hoops.

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