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Planning approves skate park plan

Plans to turn a vacant lot in north Hamilton into a skate park have been approved by the Planning Board.

However, Darren Booth of the Urban Park Association (UPA) said they are still looking for sponsors to help get the project off the ground.

“It’s all about financing,” Mr Booth said yesterday. “We cannot build it until we have got the money.

“We have had a few people step up and offer to help fund the project, but we are still looking for a major sponsor.

“We would be perfectly happy to give naming rights to a majority sponsor. I don’t really care what we call it, as long as we get it out there.”

According to the plans, which were approved on Friday, the park would be built on Canal Street site to the immediate north of Bulls Head parking lot.

The area, now an empty lot, would be regraded and paved, with the UPA moving their temporary seven-foot half-pipe and two temporary four-foot ramps to the area.

Mr Booth said that in addition to the ramps, there had been discussion of installing flood lights and a security camera on the site so that skateboarders could use the park in winter, even when it gets dark earlier.

He estimated the total cost of the project to ba around $40,000, but said once the site is completed the UPA would likely continue it’s fundraising efforts, both to maintain the park and to help Bermudian skateboarders compete internationally.

“If some of the kids get good, we could help send them off for competitions,” Mr Booth said.

“There are a lot of kids who are already getting really good. But first they need a location to practice so they can get better.”

He said that he believed the UPA could get charity status in the next few weeks, and has agreed with the Corporation on a three-year lease on the property.

Mr Booth said that the Island has an active community of skateboarders who don’t have a dedicated place to hone their skills.

In the meantime, the UPA has operated a temporary skate park in Sandys, but that site was closed several weeks ago, leaving the group to seek out another temporary location.

“We have been working with the Corporation of Hamilton to try and find a temporary location for some Sundays,” Mr Booth said. “We’re just trying to give the kids something to do.

“These kids are starving for something to do, and while some things are out there, they cost money.

“The idea is to get the kids a place to go. Even if they don’t skateboard, it is somewhere that they can go.”

The site of a propsed skate park near Bulls Head car park.

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Published September 27, 2011 at 2:00 am (Updated September 27, 2011 at 10:29 am)

Planning approves skate park plan

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