Ideas abound for future Pontiac skatepark – The Oakland Press
Pontiac’s next take on the future Oakland Park skate park will be in October, according to Matt Fluegge, CEO of Seattle-based Grindline, the company contracted to design and build the park. Fluegge was in Pontiac on Wednesday for a brainstorming session and the city continues to collect suggestions.
Fluegge led the brainstorming session at City Hall, which drew about two dozen people. Most were teenagers eager to have some influence on the design and features of the park.
Many suggestions were for specific poured concrete elements, such as the ramp and step called the “euro gap”, a medium sized bowl, ramps or other types of concrete formations, from the solid pipe, which looks like to a giant concrete culvert. – Fluegge said this is the most expensive item – half a pipe or even a traditional set of steps with a metal rail attached for tricks, among other ideas.
Others came up with ideas based on their experiences at the park: a water bottle filling station, an area where people could charge their skateboards or phones, a solar array to provide electricity. Others encouraged a canopy or trees for shade, a child-friendly playground near the skatepark, and a picnic area that could seat 15 or 20 people. Another teenager suggested an area reserved for spectators.
Among the handful of adults in the crowd of about two dozen was a man who said he had never ridden a skateboard but was “a huge fan of the sport”; and another man who asked how many more kids would be hurt once the new, more difficult skatepark was installed.
A young father with two young children requested beginner and intermediate levels so he could improve his skills while teaching his children.
Fluegge said the new facility would improve safety, but sport is an individual sport, and unlike football or soccer, “there is no doctor who examines you” if someone gets injured.
Trevor Staples of the Skatepark Project explained that municipal insurance policies generally cover skateparks the same way they cover city-owned basketball, football, baseball and soccer fields.
“If you Googled ‘skateboard accident’ you’d get millions of videos,” Staples said. “But those are mostly related to crashes with pedestrians or on uneven surfaces, not in skateparks.”
Most injuries occur when people don’t wear helmets and hit their heads or when they fall and don’t wear wrist guards, Staples said.
Rolando Ybarra asked Grindline designers to find a way to survey Pontiac skateboarders to determine their level of skating and design the park for the larger group.
Ybarra was among several who called for cultural references to be included in the park, including Native American references such as Chief Pontiac and the phoenix symbol, which is also used by high school sports teams, as well as Hispanic and a nod to the city automobile. the story.
A teenager asked if it was possible to incorporate all or part of an older car, but Fluegge said car parts wear out quickly. He said it would be possible to use the poured concrete to create an automotive reference.
“We want to celebrate your community,” Fluegge said. “Advancing ideas.”
He said Grindline will return to Pontiac in October with a preliminary concept, seeking more advice from residents. Once a design is approved, he said, engineers get to work and construction “will follow as soon as possible, weather permitting.”
The city’s online survey for skatepark ideas and opinions is online, at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScrHa5DNLDv_47Vc05OBUTswcNhpuqHKDhMhJTqSFN2KzWVtg/viewform.