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Renovation of Harman Park shelter complete

December 16, 2013
By Kevin Sweeney - Journal Editor , The Journal

NEW ULM - The New Ulm Park and Rec Department cut the ribbon on the newly remodeled and renovated Harman Park shelter Sunday.

Park and Rec Director Tom Schmitz said the shelter has been completely renovated, inside and out.

"We kept the Kasota stone facade and the shell of the building," said Schmitz. "Everything else is new."

Article Photos

Staff photo by Kevin Sweeney
Mayor Robert Beussman cuts the ribbon on the newly remodeled and renovated Harman Park shelter on Sunday. The shelter was completely gutted inside, with a new roof and covered patios on three sides. Pictured in front, from left, are Park and Rec Director Tom Schmitz, Park and Rec Commissioners Rod Karnitz, Randy Sperling and Steve Thiesfeldt, Beussman, Grace Shaneman, Commissioner Jean Prochniak and Michael Shaneman, representing the New Ulm Chamber of Commerce. Visible in back are City Councilor Lisa Fischer, Paul Sabatino of Paul’s Electric, Marie Sperling, and Ryan Neidecker of Ericksen Construction and Developing of Sleepy Eye and New Ulm, the general contractor on the project.

A new roof on the building now extends out, providing shade and shelter over new patio areas on three sides. Only the west side, facing the skating rink and the hill to Hermann Heights, is unsheltered, leaving room, Schmitz said, for possible future expansion.

The whole building is now ADA accessible, with ramps leading to the entrance. The newly renovated rest rooms are also ADA accessible, and have entries from inside the building and from the outside.

The concession area has been renovated with a new sink and fixtures. The building also has a new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system.

All doors and windows have been replaced. The new windows on the west side replace boarded up windows, and provide an excellent view of the skating rinks.

"It is now a rentable shelter," said Schmitz. It is available for a day, or hourly, and is usable in all seasons.

Schmitz said the renovation project has been in the works for five years, and a number of options were considered, ranging from complete demolition and rebuilding to several different renovation options. The highest cost option would have been about $500,000. The final plan came in at around $225,000.

The shelter will be open with a caretaker on site, most evenings during the week, except for Wednesday, and on Saturday afternoons and evenings, and Sunday afternoons. Hours will be posted at the shelter. The lights for the skating rink can be turned on even when the shelter is closed



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