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Arena pigeons

Officials are trying to pigeon-proof the area beneath the Pinnacle Bank Arena's north deck.

The thousands of spikes installed on the ledges and light poles beneath the Pinnacle Bank Arena’s north plaza didn’t deter the pigeons.

The birds adapted, settling in behind and between the pointed fiberglass.

So the company that manages arena maintenance looked at other options. There was a liquid deterrent, but that would require putting a worker on a lift every time it needed to be reapplied.

They talked about fake owls. “That might slow them down a little,” said Adam Hoebelheinrich, with Project Control. “But once they realize the fake owl is a fake owl, they’ll be up there again.”

And it’s a problem when they’re up there, because their droppings dirty the ground below.

But that could change. Project Control and the West Haymarket Joint Public Agency have decided on what they hope is a permanent solution: Dozens of pieces of angled aluminum screwed into the concrete, sealing off the horizontal ledges that give the birds a place to roost.

The problem area is the underside of the plaza on the arena’s northeast side — accessible by the pedestrian bridge and a long ramp. The deck covers the entrance used by Husker basketball teams and a walkway that serves the north parking lot.

The birds aren’t too much trouble this time of year, Hoebelheinrich said.

“But we’re trying to get it done for basketball. It’s the winter when it’s really bad.”

They’d discussed sealing the entire area with corrugated metal decking, much like the pigeon-proofing beneath the Harris Overpass.

The new plan — designed by DLR Group — won’t cost as much, he said. But he won’t know the potential price tag until next week, when the bids are due.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-7254 or psalter@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSPeterSalter.

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Reporter

Peter Salter is a reporter.

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