Hockey players may find no ice to safe on next season, if the Boston Arena goes out of business, as it seems to be doing. Since hockey is an important sport, both for varsity and intramural squads, the committee of undergraduates and alumni which recently began a drive for a new rink was acting none too soon. If those interested in the sport do not provide the funds for a rink, skaters will be left out in the cold.
Embroiled in the midst of scholarship drives and fund raising "efforts" for things like the Divinity School and a new theatre, the Corporation must leave hockey rink plans out of its bulging proposed-buildings portfolio. Despite the critical hockey situation the rink's supporters could not expect the University to back the drive. Such a campaign would draw funds away from the University's other, more important, projects. Without University endorsement, however, the elaborate, costly rink first proposed by the committee is impractical. A campaign for a more Spartan rink might succeed through the contributions of hockey enthusiasts alone.
Hockey rinks, spare and simple, can be built for much less than the $600,000 originally suggested. A few years ago, Phillips Andover constructed an artificial, outdoor rink for $70,000, and the Taft School contracted for the same thing, with a minor modification, for $65,000.
Even with a shelter for spectators, the cost of such an arena is still reasonable. A quonset-type building, accommodating over one thousand spectators, requires about $65,000. This affords ample room for the average hockey crowd, and the Yale game could move into the Boston Garden.
In order to cover the cost of electricity and maintenance, a further endowment of $52,000 is necessary. In short, Harvard can have an adequately sheltered, self-supporting structure if alumni will donate $172,000.
Although the Corporation must devote its efforts to educational projects before it can turn to sports, there is still a need for hockey facilities. We hope that the interested group of alumni will turn its resources towards building a less elaborate rink. There is a good chance of raising the money for it, while the old plans will probably never leave the drawing board.