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Chmilz
13-05-2009, 12:57 PM
Edmonton mayor favours downtown skateboard park



EDMONTON — Mayor Stephen Mandel wants the city to look at building a downtown skateboard park to provide more recreation for young people and help keep them out of trouble.
The mayor said Wednesday he was “shocked” to learn what he described as a “harmless and healthy” activity isn’t allowed on Churchill Square.
“My God, in Edmonton there’s enough kids skateboarding downtown,” he told reporters.
“If we’re going to make downtown comfortable for kids, let’s find a place to build a skateboard park.”


http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/Edmonton+mayor+favours+downtown+skateboard+park/1592706/story.html

Chmilz
13-05-2009, 12:58 PM
In the article Ben Henderson suggests the plaza south of the library... this idea is gold, in my opinion.

moahunter
13-05-2009, 01:02 PM
On top of a building would be really cool - like the Ramsey Building, or one of the above grade parkades (which my old City used to do for Skateboarding).

Chmilz
13-05-2009, 01:08 PM
I liked the suggestion in the article because it's open and in view of everything around, which alone will eliminate most potential problems.

MrOilers
13-05-2009, 01:09 PM
In the article Ben Henderson suggests the plaza south of the library... this idea is gold, in my opinion.

Sounds perfect to me, too. That little square (Molson Square?) sits empty all the time. It might as well be used for something.

And as a person who used to skateboard as a kid, I can attest that it was very frustrating because there was nowhere where you're allowed to do it. It's actually against the law to do it in city parks, sidewalks, and streets.

A dedicated skate park is brilliant and gives kids somewhere to go and something to do. Kids who get bored are the ones who find trouble.

IanO
13-05-2009, 01:21 PM
wonderful idea that has been proven to work in many major cities around the world... even dare i say 'world class' (snicker) cities.

I dont mind molson square but wonder if its large enough?

Montrosian
13-05-2009, 01:32 PM
What other potential sites downtown can you guys think of? I think it should be close to the LRT. I like the Molson Park idea but I don't think that's big enough. Perhaps the GMAC area is a good place for this?

grish
13-05-2009, 01:37 PM
Where does city own land? It would be very expensive to purchase land downtown for this. So, either it is property already owned by the city or, perhaps go closer to the river valley such as near the Baseball park.

Montrosian
13-05-2009, 01:51 PM
Where does city own land? It would be very expensive to purchase land downtown for this. So, either it is property already owned by the city or, perhaps go closer to the river valley such as near the Baseball park.

Doesn't the city own the grassy land that is used for parking directly across from Telus Field?

IGNITERS
13-05-2009, 01:52 PM
in the PEG there is a skate park downtown and it's INCREDIBLE!
Like one of the best I have ever seen ! seems to work there?!
Edmonton is WAY behind on this but there is no time like the present!

grish
13-05-2009, 01:57 PM
Doesn't the city own the grassy land that is used for parking directly across from Telus Field?

isn't it used for... parking?

Montrosian
13-05-2009, 02:10 PM
isn't it used for... parking?


Yes but there are two grassy lots used for parking. Would it really hurt if one or the other was dug up and used for this purpose? Besides, it's not like both are really needed and if Capitals baseball does become a huge hit, other options for parking could be implemented in the future. This area is also already served well by the #9 bus route which is a major north/south route that connects with alot of major east/west routes. If LRT is not close, then this is a great alternative for making it accessible for the users of the park.

grish
13-05-2009, 02:34 PM
i did not know there were two. I am ok with this area for a skateboard park. I wonder if that is what the advocates had in mind? Other options may be in the park at the foot of Shaw conference center, or as part of the Kinsmen sports complex, although that one is a bit further away from Downtown.

Chmilz
13-05-2009, 03:10 PM
Don't freak out, I'm just throwing some ideas out... I find some of the other least used space downtown to be Churchill Square itself, and large portions of the legislature grounds. Both are close to government and would be easy for politicians to interact with youth they generally have no means of connecting with.

For the record I'm also just not a big fan of Churchill Square and all its wasted potential.

Chmilz
13-05-2009, 03:16 PM
I consulted Google Maps and may go back on my anti-rooftop idea... unless the city buys land or carves up green space, there may not be a big enough spot for a large skatepark. If a rooftop would be considered, City Centre West is the flattest, lowest rooftop available downtown that could handle a large skatepark. Remember, any skatepark would should be big enough to accomodate BMX as well.

http://maps.google.ca/?ie=UTF8&ll=53.543629,-113.495872&spn=0.001632,0.003734&t=h&z=18

edmonton daily photo
13-05-2009, 03:22 PM
CN Tower Lands would be my Pick...

jdk13
13-05-2009, 04:02 PM
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2330/2299321033_afd81d9711.jpg?v=0
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/147/394779855_a0ba14bfcb.jpg?v=0
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/117/286213966_34163149b9.jpg?v=0

I say just quit putting skatestops on benches and retaining walls, redevelop your parks and public spaces accordingly, and LET EM RIDE!

Chmilz
13-05-2009, 04:06 PM
^I like it. Why confine them to one area when we can just let them have fun with the space we have?

edmonton daily photo
13-05-2009, 04:10 PM
I think a skate park provides the propper equipment to preform/practice. where as retaining walls and benches are used mainley because there is nothing else

It also provides a social hub for people of sim intrests, and a source of pride and acceptance.

Sonic Death Monkey
13-05-2009, 06:15 PM
I'm not sure about Molson Square because of its proximity to the Westin. Unfortunate to say that some hotel guests would be wrongfully intimidated (Myles can support or refute this). I would also want the statues there relocated to Churchill Square and the parkade walls knocked down.

There's plenty of empty lots in the core - BP lands, Bell Tower area, the Quarters, 100 Ave/102 St (conveniently close to Starlite), beside the Grand. A skateboard park could also be incorporated as part of a new arena.

bulliver
13-05-2009, 07:33 PM
Wow, some of those comments on the Journal site are really terrible:

"how about these 'people' get a job and contribute something to the city instead of sitting back and waiting for a handout."

These people are the kids we're talking about here, remember?

Personally, I think a skatepark downtown is a great idea. Going to have to build it eventually if people keep moving to the area. These people who argue against it because of drugs and graffiti make no sense to me. Are they blind to the fact that this activity is going to occur whether or not it is built? Why would they deny a great asset to many people just because a few folks will abuse it?

armin
14-05-2009, 12:09 AM
My original name on here is Sean. I posted a thread a while back over this idea. I even built a little presentation and handed it off to Kim Krushnell on the promise that she'd pass it off to the mayor. That was like 2 or 3 years ago or so. Not sure if she did or not.

I got the idea from the parks in Boston, Seattle, Calgary, and Whistler. Found a number of cities that have incorporated skateboarding into their core-culture since then too. The park in Seattle is right across the street from Frank Gehry's Experience Music Project as well as the space needle.
http://www.greatbuildings.com/buildings/Experience_Music_Project.html

They were having free shows and there was people everywhere going between the EMP to the skate park to the needle to the little carnival thing. All kinds of people, all age groups, and no problems. The idea is to bring people together but give them enough space to do their thing. They can put a ton of good elements into a project like this that would keep pedestrians safe, give shopping space, a more 'hip' location as a meeting space for younger people as well keep a more secure location for safety issues like people falling down. Throw up cameras around the area and have officers down there and it can keep down the drugs. They can also incorporate graffiti walls that people can spend time on, legally, which will cut down on vandalism.

Chmilz
14-05-2009, 09:04 AM
Wow, some of those comments on the Journal site are really terrible:I read some of those and it's truly sad how many people think kids that skateboard are junkie criminals. They're just kids getting exercise doing something they love.

bpeters
14-05-2009, 09:14 AM
Hmm...and the Rock and Ride is just a dance party.

grish
14-05-2009, 09:18 AM
Hmm...and the Rock and Ride is just a dance party.

hmmm... and a community sports field is just a sports field

or

hmm... and a playground is just a playgorund


are more appropriate comparisons.

bpeters
14-05-2009, 10:03 AM
Armin had a great post and good concept. Acknowledging firstly that there is a need/want for this proposed park and secondly that there MAY be a nefarious element associated with this plan AND he offers a possible solution. How cool is that? thanks Armin, good idea, and kudos on being open-minded and fair in your post.

MrOilers
14-05-2009, 10:13 AM
I read some of those and it's truly sad how many people think kids that skateboard are junkie criminals. They're just kids getting exercise doing something they love.

Exactly. A skateboard park is the summertime equivalent of an outdoor community skating rink.

Kids will take their skateboards and have fun there. I also bet that many people walking by on the sidewalk at all times of the day would even stop and take a few minutes to watch kids do tricks on their boards.

People who are against this really are clueless.

MylesC
14-05-2009, 10:41 AM
The only reason I wouldn't want to see the Molson Square used is future expansion/etc space for the library.

Chmilz
14-05-2009, 01:02 PM
^^I know I'd enjoy sitting watching talented users having fun. Heck, it might even motivate me enough to buy a BMX and learn to do tricks like I've always wanted. Mature adults will use this too. Last I checked, Tony Hawk (pro-skater) was a 41 year old married father of two, not a junkie petty crook with paint cans in his hands. He's a far better role model than the Hannah Montana that most parents let their children idolize.

^Library can go up. Lots of unused space in the air above it without any cost to purchase land.

edmonton daily photo
14-05-2009, 07:00 PM
Molson land is not large enough.. does it get sun, or is it in shadow all the time?

Oliver school has a HUGE underused grounds.. Maybe in the heart of oliver.. Or move the playground that exists by oliver arena to oliver school and then put the skatepark there!

jdk13
15-05-2009, 01:14 PM
Walking by Molson square at lunch today, it looked nearly ready to be a skate place. it was also conveniently in sunlight at that hour. Get rid of the paving stone and benches and through in some skateable furniture like this: and lets go ride!
http://www.lisastown.com/photos/landscape/Seating_Metzger_Plaza.jpg
http://www.lisastown.com/photos/landscape/Plaza_Heinger_Metzger2.jpg

raz0469
20-05-2009, 10:31 AM
I'm not sure about Molson Square because of its proximity to the Westin. Unfortunate to say that some hotel guests would be wrongfully intimidated (Myles can support or refute this). I would also want the statues there relocated to Churchill Square and the parkade walls knocked down.

There's plenty of empty lots in the core - BP lands, Bell Tower area, the Quarters, 100 Ave/102 St (conveniently close to Starlite), beside the Grand. A skateboard park could also be incorporated as part of a new arena.

But are any of those city property? I'm sure that Mandel's idea was to use existing property, otherwise this skate park turns into a multi-million dollar political hand grenade, instead of spending a few hundred thousand to slap some features on land the city already owns.

Jimbo
20-05-2009, 11:59 AM
My original name on here is Sean. I posted a thread a while back over this idea. I even built a little presentation and handed it off to Kim Krushnell on the promise that she'd pass it off to the mayor. That was like 2 or 3 years ago or so. Not sure if she did or not.

I got the idea from the parks in Boston, Seattle, Calgary, and Whistler. Found a number of cities that have incorporated skateboarding into their core-culture since then too. The park in Seattle is right across the street from Frank Gehry's Experience Music Project as well as the space needle.
http://www.greatbuildings.com/buildings/Experience_Music_Project.html

They were having free shows and there was people everywhere going between the EMP to the skate park to the needle to the little carnival thing. All kinds of people, all age groups, and no problems. The idea is to bring people together but give them enough space to do their thing. They can put a ton of good elements into a project like this that would keep pedestrians safe, give shopping space, a more 'hip' location as a meeting space for younger people as well keep a more secure location for safety issues like people falling down. Throw up cameras around the area and have officers down there and it can keep down the drugs. They can also incorporate graffiti walls that people can spend time on, legally, which will cut down on vandalism.

I hope someone with the city gets in touch with you before they do something. You sound like you know the issues, and have given some thought to how to approach it.

I like Molson Square for the location. How big does it have to be? I'm not a skater (no kidding), but if a lot more space than this is needed, dedicated to one purpose, it might get a tad too expensive and there may be better uses for a big parcel of land. Maybe if other elements such as shops and an outdoor venue were included it might make sense, but Molson Square is a great choice, as it's a bit of a black hole now.

As Raz points out, I don't think the City is looking at some multi-million dollar development here, and I don't think they need to.

Ssqauared
04-07-2009, 03:31 AM
Why not a couple of smaller ones, especially so you don't get one group of teens dominating one area? Perhaps one in the Boyle Street area, and one temporarily in the Molson land area. It won't be used to expand Stanley Milner in the next ten years or so, and it might as well be used for something.

MJ
12-11-2009, 03:53 PM
Well the mayor backed it in May, now we may actually see some action 6 months later:

Sadly said article is filled with words like "could" and "contemplate" so we may be no further than we were back in May. Tis the Edmonton way:

Downtown Edmonton could soon be getting a temporary skateboard park.

The proposed location is just behind Milner Library and the Westin Hotel.

Councillor Ben Henderson says a skate park would be good idea for our city.

More at: http://www.630ched.com/Channels/Reg/NewsLocal/Story.aspx?ID=1164543

Sonic Death Monkey
12-11-2009, 04:00 PM
If Molson Plaza is going to be turned into a skatepark, I want the statues and monuments moved to Churchill Square.

DanC
12-11-2009, 05:01 PM
Could this be combined with the idea for an outdoor Neon Gallery?
All the sudden molson square would go from forgotten to a destination.

DeltonSpruceAveEastglen
17-11-2009, 04:01 PM
build a skateboard park and make it a bylaw to not be allowed to skateboard anywhere else; skateboarders menace pedestrians

Gemini
17-11-2009, 04:07 PM
I don't mind at all that tax dollars are going towards this. It seems a great way to spend a couple of hours. Fresh air, exercise (not for me, the kids) It's about time they gave the teens something of their own.

etownboarder
17-11-2009, 11:32 PM
build a skateboard park and make it a bylaw to not be allowed to skateboard anywhere else; skateboarders menace pedestrians

What a load of BS.

Edmcowboy11
18-11-2009, 09:29 AM
I agree that if there is a skatepark behind the library that the statues that are there now should be moved to either Churchill square or other significant places. For example the Ghandi statue/bust could be moved to a location of a bit more serenity such as either Louise Mckinney park or the little park next to Telus.

Chmilz
18-11-2009, 10:16 AM
build a skateboard park and make it a bylaw to not be allowed to skateboard anywhere else; skateboarders menace pedestrians
I boarded for years and the only people my friends or I "menaced" were the uptight blowhards that gave us grief for boarding to begin with. Never littered, never did graffiti, most of us didn't smoke, always shared the sidewalk... I'm not sure where the anger towards us came from.

Alex.L
18-11-2009, 03:07 PM
If Molson Plaza is going to be turned into a skatepark, I want the statues and monuments moved to Churchill Square.

Without a doubt this needs to happen

Jimbo
18-11-2009, 03:28 PM
build a skateboard park and make it a bylaw to not be allowed to skateboard anywhere else; skateboarders menace pedestrians
I boarded for years and the only people my friends or I "menaced" were the uptight blowhards that gave us grief for boarding to begin with. Never littered, never did graffiti, most of us didn't smoke, always shared the sidewalk... I'm not sure where the anger towards us came from.

As a cyclist, I know exactly what you mean. Only, often, the boarders get it worse. For them, the streets aren't really an option.