ORDA Revitalizes Arena for 2023 University Games

Project Profile

The New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) was initially created to manage the facilities used during Lake Placid’s 1980 Olympic Winter Games. ORDA operates multiple venues, including the Olympic Center, Olympic Jumping Complex, Mt. Van Hoevenberg, Whiteface Mountain, Gore Mountain, and Belleayre Mountain.

The Winter World University Games occurred across the multiple Lake Placid Olympic Sites in early 2023. ORDA has completed extensive renovations to modernize and improve these sites to provide unique experiences for both residents and visitors.


Inside the Olympic Center, the 7,700-seat 1980 Rink Herb Brooks Arena hosts national and international figure skating competitions, USA Hockey events, ECAC Hockey Championships, and more. The building was last updated before the 1980 Olympics, and the only utility used was electricity. In preparation for the 2023 Winter University Games, ORDA had plans to revitalize the Herb Brooks Arena to accommodate International and NHL events.

The facility’s layout required equipment to be brought in through the roof and placed in the mezzanine. Project schedule was critical to maintaining with the upcoming winter weather months and the necessary access to the roof.

Stark Tech Solution

Stark Tech worked with ORDA to complete a design assist for the renovation of the Herb Brooks Area. Our team worked with the engineer on the project along with our manufacturing partners to develop an efficient design and solution that provided NHL approved conditions in the arena. The team selected and installed VTS Air Handlers and Air2o Dehumidifiers to meet temperature and humidity requirements while also improving energy efficiency.

Effective project management played a huge role in the successful completion of this project. Our team provided continuous communication throughout the project helping to relay any equipment delays that would affect project timeline. After numerous delays with the dehumidifiers, it was critical to install and startup the equipment without any issues. Our team executed this flawlessly and worked with the contractors to ensure the project wasn’t held up any further on our end.

Project Result

The new refrigeration plant will now create 25% more cooling capacity, increased energy efficiency, and will ensure a more reliable skating experiencing on all ice surfaces.