CORNING - Bids will be unsealed Wednesday afternoon for the extensive upgrades to the heavily-used Nasser Civic Center Ice Rink, which was built in the late-1980s.

City Manager Mark Ryckman said phase I of the ice rink upgrades, which includes replacing the aging floor and cooling system, will likely begin in the spring and be completed in time for the rink to reopen next winter.

“We hope to have construction underway in late May or June.” Ryckman said. “The City Council has bonded for $900,000 for that phase of the upgrades. So that money is in place.”

The bids will be opened at 2 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall.

The current R22 refrigeration, which allows the floor to freeze, needs to be replaced because the system is no longer to be produced, Ryckman said. Both of the ice rink's two floors, one on top of the other will need to be removed to make way for a new floor and refrigeration system.

Alex Hamilton, city director of parks and recreation, said he is excited that the project bids will finally be opened and he is looking forward to the ice rink enhancements, which will be completed in the fall in time for the rink to open for the winter months.

“It will be nice to have a new system that will be more reliable,” Hamilton said.

In the summer of 2019 city officials expect to upgrade the bathrooms at the rink, provide handicap accessibility and repaint the roof trusses.

Corning Enterprises donated $150,000, Crystal City Parks Foundation has pledged $3,000 and city officials have applied for $363,000 in state funding to pay for the upgrade.