Keeping it Cool While Saving Energy: the San Diego Ice Arena

It takes a lot of energy to run an ice rink. They are open long hours, temperatures hover around 50 degrees and huge amounts of electricity are used to make and maintain the ice.

However, the San Diego Ice Arena in Mira Mesa goes against the grain with its smart technologies and innovative solutions that make this local facility a prime example of sustainability.

The San Diego Ice Arena was recently honored at our 12th Annual Energy Showcase, which recognized local businesses and organizations that are adopting energy efficiency measures to help build healthier communities.

In 2000, Mark and Philip Linssen acquired the San Diego Ice Arena with a plan to bring in new equipment and facility upgrades that would help them save energy and money. Over the course of 17 years, the facility has implemented a variety of energy efficiency measures that have brought it close to being a completely zero net energy building.

Innovative solutions

Each time the San Diego Ice Arena rink was resurfaced, 3,000 gallons of ice was lost. The Linssens came across an innovative solution to reuse the ice: a sub cooler snow melt. Now, the ice that is collected during the resurfacing is converted into water, held in a reclamation tank and used to cool the line that runs under the ice rink to keep it cold.

The facility also installed ceiling insulation to keep the cool air in the building, and added all new LED lighting that can be dimmed off-hours, . Through SDG&E’s Energy Management Tool, all the equipment is run from one program—helping the facility run like a well-oiled and efficient machine. 

“When we took over the arena, we were using about 3,700 kilowatt hours (kWh) a day,” said Mark Linssen. “After putting together a plan, being innovative and implementing over 11 energy efficiency measures we are now at 750 kWh and foresee a day that we may get to our zero net energy goal.”

Watch this short video to learn more about how energy efficiency is keeping the San Diego Ice Arena cool:

This article is part of a series highlighting SDG&E’s 2017 Energy Champions. Click here to watch short video profiles showcasing how we’re working together to build healthier communities.