A new equipment building is being constructed very close to the recreation area driveway entrance.
The main purpose of this building will house the ski club grooming equipment. With the addition of the large PistenBully groomer, the old building got very cramped and some equipment had to be stored outside. The new building will allow our dedicated groomers to move around more easily while storing more equipment inside. The building will also have an enclosed, secured compound for cold storage of grooming equipment and for refueling of equipment.
The building will also have an office and fully equipped bathroom. Current completion date for the building is November or December of this year.
Part of the old equipment building will be used for storage for the borough Parks and Recreation Department. The rest may be used as an additional waxing area and equipment storage for competitive events.
The Nordic Ski Club of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough worked together to obtain funding for the building, which came from a state grant as well as from grants from the Rasmuson Foundation, Arctic Winter Games Legacy fund, and Tanana Valley Youth Sports. PDC Engineering has also donated hours and hours of time to this project.
Unfortunately, the bottom part of the Warmup Loop has been lost to the new equipment building. A short new bypass trail was built so that the Warmup Loop stays a loop, albeit a bit shorter than before.
Also, a bit of trail was added that connects the recreation area road to the north part of the North Forty trail. This will allow the groomers to access the North Forty directly from the new equipment building.
Other facilities work done or being done include:
• Major brushing around the parking lots and near the Birch Hill Cross Country Ski Center. This was done by a volunteer group from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, also known as Mormons.
• The ski center is getting a new coat of paint.
• Plans are in the works to extend a communications wire from the ski center to the Timing Hut. This should improve Internet connection to the hut, including helping to improve the reliability of the weather station.
(Photo by Eric Troyer: New equipment building under construction.)