Here are some answers I received from 10 quick questions I sent over to Craig Raines who is lead on the Planning, Construction and Maintenance Division, Department of Recreation and Parks, Los Angeles CA. I am doing several of these so you readers can point your cities representatives who have fallen behind the times to get up to speed on building multiple skateparks across urban cities. Starting with Los Angeles CA., who has 16 skateparks now in operation and they are a variety of Prefab (being replaced!), small Skate Spots, Street Plaza’s, and full blown skateparks.
1) How many Skateparks are currently open and operational in your city?
16 parks are currently open and skateable. Also we have 4 prefab parks that are not operable and as soon as funds become available we intend to convert them to poured in place concrete parks.
2) How many skateparks are under construction or will open in the next couple of years?
3 parks are now under design and should be entering the construction phase first part of 13.
3) When did the cities first skatepark open?
I do not have the specifics on when the first park open but I believe the prefab ones were put up in the late 90’s and the first poured in place was 01.
4) When did your city decide to have multiple skateparks?
We are big city and the need for safe and sheddable space was needed.
5) How did your city decide on having more then one skatepark?
Community Pressure…..Plus when I started in 06 the program was given to me and I ran with……I have done 14 parks since 07 and 3 more will be built next year.
6) What is your cities population?
2 million plus
7) What resources have you found that you would share with other municipalities?
Do not be afraid to listen and work with your local skaters….they will amaze you. Also involve the skaters in the design process and hire reputable SKATE PARK CONTRACTORS…..Such as Grindline, Team Pain, SPA and etc. Do not think you can get by with modular prefab and contractors who do not have experience in skatepark construction.
8) What has your city learned since opening its first skatepark until now?
That skateboarding is not a static element and that with each new park you should strive to meet the dynamic needs of what ever skate community you building a park for. Also in today’s age skateboarding is a family deal, Mom, Dad, Sis, and little bro may all skate.
9) Does your city have a master skatepark plan it is implementing?
I am currently working on a Strategic Plan.
10) Is skateboarding on the streets illegal in your city?
Yes on the sidewalks.