Parking Lot Problems: Scheels Arena Officials Respond - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Parking Lot Problems: Scheels Arena Officials Respond

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There are new developments in a story we brought you Monday on some parking lot problems within the city of Fargo.

We went to the city to ask why they're suing the owner of a downtown parking lot that's been left long unpaved, while the Scheels Arena parking lot, on the southside, seems to have similar problems.

City planners talked to us -- and now Scheels officials are speaking out and answering questions about the parking lot in question.

Scheels tells Valley News they checked with their developer and they believe they are in compliance with city code.

Scheels also says they had no parking lots at all when the arena opened. Since then, they've added several.

And they say they have good reasons for not wanting to pave that overflow lot -- reasons that may benefit those who enjoy ice sports in Fargo.

 "You can see today, looks pretty good, we've put a ton of energy in there. Every year we add crushed concrete," says Scheels Arena General Manager Jon Kram while meeting with Valley News Tuesday to talk about the improvements they have made to the lots and what they do to maintain them.

"Also, we re-grade to make sure we have the correct water flow out of it, so we have the best conditions possible," he says.

Tuesday's drier, cooler weather eliminated a lot of the muck drivers were complaining about yesterday.

Kram says they can also avoid the muck by choosing one of the other eight hundred or so spots that are paved. The unpaved overflow lot is cordoned off unless there's an event for three thousand or so at the arena. Kram says people park there anyway, though, because it's the closest lot to the entrance.

"We really don't want to have to pave it today, because this is where we designed to have the sheets of ice. And we wouldn't want to have that money go to waste," he sayas.

Kram says the Scheels Arena was designed with geothermals and other features -- at considerable expense -- with an ice rink expansion in mind where the overflow lot is now.

Kram says they'll follow up with city officials, and hope they won't be forced to pave.

"We'll cross that bridge when we come to it," he says.

Kram says the issue may not even be the city of Fargo's to enforce, since he thinks the lot in question may be on Fargo Park District property.

Kram also says they offer free shuttle service to the arena during spring, when conditions are wettest in the overflow lot.

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