The recently revamped Gordon Spratt Reserve skatepark
What spins your wheels? Whether skateboarding, scooting, BMX, roller/quad or inline skating takes your fancy, spinners are winners when it comes to the revamped Gordon Spratt Reserve skatepark, now open in Pāpāmoa.
The Gordon Spratt Reserve skatepark has increased by around 300sq/m to an overall size of approximately 900sq/m and now includes a range of quarter pipe and street style features such as a manual pad, a street hip, a euro gap, A-frame ramp, stairs, ledges and rails.
The upgrade is part of a citywide skatepark improvements initiative, which includes the development of a new destination skate park in Mount Maunganui, says Tauranga City Council Design Lead, Pete Fraser.
“We heard loud and clear from our passionate and growing skate community that existing skateparks were too small, outdated, and limiting for users, so Council committed to improving citywide skate facilities.
“The debut of skateboarding at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics inspired a rise in popularity of the sport and a demand for larger and more modern skating facilities. Skating appeals to a diverse range of people and provides physical, mental and social benefits. It’s a fun, unstructured, affordable activity that promotes being active and creative in suitable outdoor environments.”
The skatepark, which is accessible for all roller codes, was designed in collaboration with experienced local skaters and the Acid Skatepark crew, who also constructed the skatepark.
Local skate advocate Garth Urquhart, who worked with Council to inform the planning and design for the Gordon Spratt Reserve skatepark and the destination skatepark at the Mount, says having these facilities is a game changer for Tauranga’s growing skate community.
“I’m super happy to see Council realising how good skateparks are for our youth. The skateparks that were built in the Bay years ago were done by people with no idea about skateboarding. They’re outdated with obstacles at incorrect heights and angles, and have rough surfaces. It’s awesome that skaters have been consulted properly for the Gordon Spratt Reserve skatepark and the Mount’s destination skatepark.”
Garth says the new facilities will help with progression for skaters and will offer many people a positive place to go have fun, exercise, meet new people and make friends.
“I’ve witnessed many kids with problems and people with mental health challenges (including myself) take up skateboarding and end up doing really well with their lives. I believe it gives them something positive to focus on and, as they get better at skating, they get the sense of achievement which is addictive and rewarding. The camaraderie amongst skaters is great too!”
An important factor highlighted in the feedback received from the local skater community was that more lighting was needed at the skatepark. This has since been installed and will allow use of the skatepark all year round, day or night. Wider upgrades to the Gordon Spratt Reserve include a new toilet block and seating. Other new features include a pathway in and around the skate park, more rubbish bins, bike racks and shade sails.
The skatepark upgrade is one of several projects taking place across Tauranga to create a more liveable city which has amenities and environments that contribute to a sense of wellbeing and enjoyment.
Read more at www.tauranga.govt.nz/skate or check out the new skatepark here.