It was all hands on deck during Thursday night’s skate park planning session.
Approximately 40 local skaters, elected officials and individuals interested in a proposed plan to establish a skate park in the city were in attendance. The session was arranged to obtain feedback from skaters on what amenities they would like.
When asked about possible placement of the skate park, McMinnville Parks and Recreation assistant director Justin Scott said one consideration was constructing it at Rocket Park because that park could be undergoing an extensive renovation in the near future.
The skaters were adamant against that.
“Please don’t place it there,” said one skater.
The skaters were steadfast the park should be located on McMinnville Civic Center property due to its central location.
American Ramp Company, a worldwide skate park provider, offered a virtual session with representatives Rob Jones and lead designer Chuck Dodge. The conference allowed skaters to see a computer-generated image of what the skate park would look like and any suggested changes were made as the group watched.
“We have two designs on the screen right now,” said Jones. “However, we have our whole design elements open for anything you want to see, other features that we can incorporate.”
Selected by the group was a 4,000-square-foot pad. Among the items suggested for consideration on the pad were a flat box, grind box with a flat bar attached, a free-standing flat rail, and banks and quarters on either side of the pad to keep skaters going back and forth.
“Can he can extend the platform on the halfpipe and keep the park circular so you can actually run the whole thing?” asked one skater. “When you are doing runs, you can keep going.”
The session lasted approximately an hour as skaters offered their knowledge, making suggested changes to the design and what they would like to see for the end product.
Funds for the skate park will be from a $90,000 grant obtained by Friends of the Greenway and awarded by The Steven and Kate Smith Community Trust.
Jones reminded the group there is a budget.
“We know that a lot of times what drives these projects is the budget,” said Jones. “We don’t have an idea and we don’t have an open pricing sheet on what this would likely cost. One thing we want to do is, when we are done, go through and prioritize the layout so if we have to phase out the whole project, we can start with items that are wanted the most in the first phase. As phases are added, include more of the other pieces.”
A follow-up planning session will be arranged when the financial end of the design selections are calculated.