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Project Background: 

The first thing one notices walking into the Hibbing Curling Club is the large viewing windows and the minimal support columns. Looking beyond and through them, one sees the seven sheets of ice ready for action. The blues and reds of each sheet’s house are a bit brighter, and the business names and logos of the on-ice ads are a bit crisper.

But the real difference is below.

The club recently completed a major mechanical upgrade to the rink area with a new dehumidification system and a new state-of-the-art refrigeration system and floor. The improvements replaced the outdated 1930s infrastructure.

The floor slab is specialized, extremely flat and minimizes the amount of ice thickness reducing the amount of water needed. A flat, more uniform surface, makes for greater energy efficiencies. The new system will also provide better temperatures on the ice, which helps control the conditions of the playing surfaces.

A specialized low-temperature dehumidification system eliminates frost from forming on the ice surfaces, resulting in an ice surface which meets state-of-the-art standards and hosts competitive games.

“The project went very well,” said Mark Wirtanen, ARI Architect and club member. “All of the equipment thus far performed at or better than the specifications. Overall, it couldn’t have gone any better.”

The project was made possible by partnering with the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB) and the City of Hibbing.

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