Skateboarders of all ages gathered on Sunday, April 26 at Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant Skate Park to oppose its possible removal.
It was a boisterous crowd, ranging from young children to parents on skateboards.
At issue, a three year old, $200,000 skate park which could find itself on the chopping block tomorrow.
Complaints from neighbours about noise, and an older late-night crowd have prompted the Park Board to reconsider the park. The board is considering removing the park entirely, or possibly downgrading it to a lower difficulty level.
But the Vancouver Skateboard Coalition’s Jeff Cole disagrees the park attracts a bad element.
“You can’t see into the skateboard park late at night. There’s no lights here. There’s no one hopping the fence to skateboard. There’s people in the park, yes, but that happens at every park across the city.”
He says the park is a community resource used by people of all ages, and that removing it would be a big loss for youth.
Eleven-year-old skateboarder Theo Caseley agrees. He says the beginner-level park is important because of the interaction between riders of different ages.
“[It’s] a place where beginners can come from the age where they can stand up to where they can’t stand up. The older guys they can give you tips. I look up to a lot of older skater guys, and the younger guys you can teach them some tips.”
Supporters say the answer is to build noise barriers — not remove the park.
The Vancouver Park Board meets tomorrow night to consider altering or removing the facility.