Skaters of all ages and skating persuasions have been selected by Tauranga City Council to help design a destination skate park for the city.
Council is co-designing and identifying the best location for a destination skate park, as well as upgrading existing skate facilities.
A survey of the community in late 2021 attracted more than 500 submissions and more than 250 people put their hand up to join the community design group.
Director of Spaces and Places, Paul Dunphy, says the response was “fantastic”.
“We were especially pleased to see young people in our community telling us what they want to see in a destination skate park, with more than 180 of those responses coming from people aged 24 years and under.
“The most interest came from the 25 to 44-year-old age group which did include some parents of skaters, but also included a large number of skateboarders, which shows that skating is an accessible and inclusive activity with active participants from a range of demographics, gender and backgrounds.”
The 24-member community design group will meet for the first time during February and includes a range of ages - including four under 16s - and skating interests, including skateboarding, roller skating, inline skating, BMX and scootering.
The group will be facilitated by local skateboarders Cale Tolley and Sam Robertson and roller skater Ivy Bates, and work alongside council staff as well as skate designer Richard Smith from Rich Landscapes.
A completed concept design for the destination skate park is expected mid-year, but in the meantime improvements to existing skate parks have already begun.
A new mini ramp – a partnership with Sam Robertson from Sam’s Skate School – and a new wedge ramp were added to the skate park at Memorial Park before Christmas in time for the school holidays.
“Some of the feedback we received from the survey was around not having enough facilities for beginner skaters so the addition of a mini ramp at Memorial Park to help learn how to transition from horizontal to vertical skateboarding before tackling some of the larger vert ramps around the city is a great start,” says Paul.
Skating provides physical, mental and social benefits. It’s a fun, unstructured, affordable activity that promotes being active and creative in suitable outdoor environments.
A world-class facility in Tauranga will help aspiring Olympic skateboarders and attract skating events both domestically and internationally, providing a boost to our local tourism industry and economy.
For more information about the destination skate park project visit destination skate park project.
Roller skater Ivy Bates, top, and local skateboarders Cale Tolley, left, and Sam Robertson will facilitate the community design group for Tauranga's new destination skate park.