The development of a new skatepark in Revelstoke took a step forward with a series of meetings between local stakeholders and designers New Line Skateparks last week.
Kyle Dion, the owner and lead designer for New Line, was in Revelstoke on Thursday, Nov. 27, to meet with city officials, the Columbia Valley Skateboard Association and members of the Southside Neighbourhood Group.
New Line was contracted by the CVSA to design the new skatepark in Kovach Park.
“Before we kick off any design process we like to get all the parameters and ideas and opportunities and constraints, and get our head wrapped around what we’re dealing with, and seeing how the design might address some of those,” said Dion during an open house at the community centre that evening.
The day began with a meeting with the city in the morning to iron out contract details and was followed by a meeting with Southside stakeholders.
“One thing that’s very important to us with the opposition we have had, we want to make sure the Southside Neighbourhood Groups’ voices were heard, and show them we care about what they think,” said Karl Jost, the president of the CVSA. “They’re going to be stewards of the park, essentially. We wanted a special meeting for them to air their concerns.”
The open house was held in the evening, and gave the public opportunity to hear about what New Line could do with the new park, as well as provide feedback on what features they’d like to see. There were three posters placed on the wall with different park elements that could be incorporated. Participants were invited to place dots next to the elements they like the most.
“That’s going to give me an idea of priorities. We’re dealing with skateboarders, BMX, beginner, intermediate, advanced, bowl skaters and street skaters and all these different types of people,” said Dion. “Even in 20,000 square feet it’s hard to accommodate everybody. Tonight is about setting priorities.”
He said many aspects will be considered when designing the park — not just what features to include. Elements like where the sun comes from, view lines into and out of the park, and how it fits with other features in Kovach Park will be looked at.
Dion will now be working on several preliminary designs that he will bring back to the city and CVSA for refinement sometime in January. He’ll return with a mostly-finished design in February that will be presented to the public for feedback. After, it will be a matter of finalizing the design.
Once that is done, it will be up to the CVSA to raise money to build the new park. They are hoping to build a 15,000 to 20,000 square foot park. Dion said construction costs range from $40 to $50 per square foot, so the total cost will be about $800,000.
“Essentially after this night and after we get a first design, it’s go go go for fundraising, grant writing and just raising money,” said Jost. “We’ll essentially be shovel-ready minus the cash.”
He’s hopeful money can be raised quickly and construction can begin in a year or two.
“For me, it’s trying to get it as soon as possible,” he said. “The kids in Revelstoke have been waiting long enough for updated amenities. I want to see them have it before they’re too old like me.”