Skateboarders ask for safe park

Dunedin skaters say new safely sealed skateboarding facilities are needed to support their growing sport.

Dunedin Skateboarding Association committee member Dr Olivier Jutel said there had been no upgrades or “basic maintenance” at city skate parks during the past 18 years, since work in 2003.

“Our knees and muscles and bones rely upon nicely sealed surfaces, and we are lacking for some of those.”

Skateboarding and other wheeled sports were going from strength to strength, Dr Jutel said.

“It’s really popping. It’s an Olympic sport [and] the pandemic has seen a massive boom in skateboarding.”

A destination skate park could help attract visitors to an area.

A “world-class” skate park in Invercargill and others in Queenstown, Wanaka and Winton were identified as examples in the southern region.

“Winton has a massive facility that is a destination skatepark. We jump in the car and we go there for the weekend because this is a place to go.

‘‘It makes the city interesting.”

Dunedin Skateboarding Association president Nic Hart said the group did not expect the council to stump up the full amount to build a new park.

“We want to work with you to develop plans and then based on what you’re able to contribute and what we can pull from other sources, figure out how ... to achieve the goals that we’re looking for.”

 - Andrew Marshall

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