San Ramon's Golden Skate roller rink no longer has a firm closing date, following an uptick in attendance and community support for the facility, and delays with permitting and development for a townhouse project for the site.
"We will not cease operation at the end of this month and instead plan to remain open through at least the end of 2022," an update on the rink's website said Wednesday.
The rink's staff had initially announced July 31 as the final day of operations, but confirmed that the closing date has been rescinded as of Tuesday, and that the rink would remain open through the end of the year.
Following the announcement of the rink's closure in November, citing financial hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic just a few months after reopening last spring, the Golden Skate has seen a surge in media coverage and fond memories of the rink on social media, as well as an uptick in attendance in what were its supposedly final days.
"The overwhelming response from our local patrons, Bay Area adult skaters and our local leaders and friends, has caused us to reconsider closing The Golden Skate at this juncture," Wednesday's announcement said. "Our staff has dedicated themselves to staying and enjoying the joy and happiness of so many young and old people visiting our rink on a regular basis."
A 47-unit townhouse project planned for the property, which was approved by a reluctant Planning Commission in compliance with state affordable housing laws in December, does not yet have a construction date or developer set.
Planning commissioners criticized the project ahead of their approval in December, noting that it qualified for an application under the recently implemented state affordable housing legislation, SB 330, despite not guaranteeing any affordable housing.
The 47 townhome units would be for sale, with 16 accessory dwelling units (ADUs) required to be rented at below-market rate prices. However, it's uncertain what if any authority would require the units to be rented, rather than incorporated as additional space for the townhome owners.
"By falsely characterizing the fourth bedroom as an ADU, the product sponsors want to receive all the benefits that come from delivering a product with 34% affordability, yet this project will provide not one single unit of affordable housing," Planning Commissioner Corie Edwards said, prior to abstaining from the commission's vote to approve the project on Dec. 6.
Despite approving the project, the four other planning commissioners were also critical of it ahead of the Dec. 6 vote.
"I think we are going to end being on record as having to approve this while we are also on record as saying — what I heard was five people who disapprove of this," then-Commission Chair Jean Kuznik said on Dec. 6.