Call for mountain bike track in park

Makeshift mountain bike obstacles at Plynlimon Park constructed by local children inspired the...
Makeshift mountain bike obstacles at Plynlimon Park constructed by local children inspired the suggestion of a permanent fixture for the community to enjoy. Photo: Geoff Sloan
A new mountain bike track could be a possibility for a park in Strowan.

Plynlimon Park is mainly used by dog walkers and for sporting events. But Strowan resident Edward Griffiths believed the space could be utilised more.

He also said the park has a history of anti-social behaviour, with people using it to take drugs and sleep rough.

“I have observed, in my eight years living opposite the park, that it’s very under-utilised,” he said.

Last year, Christchurch City Council removed a number of trees on the eastern boundary, and since then local children and teenagers used the clear spaces to construct temporary mountain bike obstacles.

“This increased the use of the park and had an immediate impact on reducing anti-social behaviour occurring and instances of people rough sleeping,” he said.

“The number of people, young and old, using these obstacles has been simply amazing to observe.”

Plynlimon Park. Photo: Geoff Sloan
Plynlimon Park. Photo: Geoff Sloan
Mr Griffiths said following its success, a neighbour took exception to the obstacles and had put up signs in the park telling users to keep out and that “riding mountain bikes underneath trees violated council regulations.”

“Following these actions, the number of people using the park plummeted. Since then, it’s again mostly used by people to exercise their dog.”

It was because of this Mr Griffiths decided to write to the Fendalton-Waimairi-Harewood Community Board, requesting several permanent mountain bike obstacles.

“The number of people riding bikes in the park while they were in place clearly suggests many local people would visit if there were permanent, council-endorsed mountain bike obstacles.”

He saw other benefits to the idea such as the low cost to construct and maintain, encouraged cycle lane use and provided a destination for both children and adults to learn new skills.

Said the city council manager of community parks Al Hardy: “In the past 12 months, the council has received one report relating to anti-social behaviour at the park.

“Staff have been asked by the community board to investigate further and report back in the next three months.”

 

suv-updated-banner.jpg

Local trusted journalism matters - now more than ever

As the Covid-19 pandemic brings the world into uncharted waters, Star Media journalists and photographers continue to report local stories that matter everyday - yours.

For more than 152 years our journalists have provided Cantabrians with local news that can be trusted. It’s more important now than ever to keep Cantabrians connected.

As our advertising has fallen during the pandemic, support from you our reader is crucial.

You can help us continue to provide local news you can trust simply by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter