Neighbors give cold shoulder to temporary ice skating rink

Posted: Updated:
UNION COUNTY -

A temporary ice skating rink in Union Country is creating a chilly relationship between Westfield and Garwood.

The Westfield Rink was built on a basketball court in Gumbert Park and is in a trial run through next March. Westfield Mayor Shelley Brindle describes the rink a public-private partnership, with a private company covering building costs, but sharing in profit.

Neighbors on Chestnut Street in Garwood say they have concerns and complaints about the new rink.

Tom Pedas, a Garwood resident, says he can see and hear the rink, tent and trailers from his front terrace. Residents of his 55 and older townhouse community say they were never consulted about the rink going up through the town line.

They say they've embraced the baseball fields and basketball courts that were already in the park, but the rink is an eyesore and a safety hazard.

Brindle says they're working with Garwood to address concerns.

Neighbors say they're hopeful Westfield will find a different location for the rink next year.

The rink is open to the public seven days a week and is open until 9 p.m. on weeknights.

Brindle says at first, the rink would be open later, but the time was adjust because of the concerns coming from Garwood.

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