If approved, the total cost of the investment plan for Braemar Arena and Park and Fred Richards Park would be $64.6 million, which would be funded by a half-percent sales tax increase.
Fred Richards Park, 4400 Parklawn Ave., is being created from the former Fred Richards Executive Golf Course, which closed in 2014. It also includes what was formerly known as Lake Edina Park. The 43-acre site, almost double the size of Centennial Lakes Park, will become a multi-use park for a variety of year-round activities.
Fred Richards Park will subtly divide into sections, providing different experiences for people and nature:
Cost estimate: $9.9 million
Cost estimate: $1.9 million
Cost estimate: $5.9 million
At 500 acres, Braemar Park, 6364 John Harris Drive, is the largest recreational space in Edina. It is home to Braemar Golf Course, Braemar Golf Dome, Braemar Arena, Braemar Field, Courtney Fields and the South Metro Public Safety Training Facility.
While most of the land in Braemar Park already is in use, several opportunities for improvements were identified and explored starting in 2017 with the help of resident input at community meetings and through online surveys.
The Braemar Park Master Plan balances the most-sought amenities with the park's environmental and natural resource needs. It includes an estimated $8.1 million in improvements, including:
Braemar Arena is home to Edina High School, the Edina Hockey Association, Breakaway Academy and the Braemar-City of Lakes Figure Skating Club. Braemar Arena is one of the busiest ice arenas in the entire state; approximately 500,000 annual visits are recorded there from residents of 158 Minnesota communities, 12 states and one other country.
$13.5 million in capital improvement rehabilitation projects in Braemar Arena’s operating infrastructure is necessary, including:
If the 2022 Legislature approves the City’s request, the plan would also include an additional investment of $25.3 million at Braemar Arena to demolish the South Rink and add two new ice rinks, build an improved drop-off/pick-up area, add parking and expand the lobby.