Delridge Skatepark update: Design rolls on

(Micah Shapiro from Grindline at center, with skatepark meeting attendees)
Even though money to build the Delridge Skatepark didn’t make it into this year’s budget, there’s money ($76,000) to design it – so that’s why dozens of people gathered last night at Youngstown Arts Center, including some of the skaters who will use it. With reps from the city Parks Department and from the renowned West Seattle-based skatepark-design/construction firm Grindline and landscape designers Abbotsford, they discussed possible features. The city estimates the skatepark will cost about $446,000 to build, and there’s hope that money might make it into the 2010 budget, if not from some other source (we asked about the parks levy passed by voters, since some of that wasn’t specifically spoken for upfront; decisions about that $ are still being worked on). Once that money’s in hand, and a design’s complete, construction would only take about 90 days. Also from last night’s meeting: Lots of support for integrating art into the project. One commenter’s words summed it up: “Make it West Seattle.” More design discussions ahead; we’ll keep you posted.

6 Replies to "Delridge Skatepark update: Design rolls on"

  • issues January 15, 2009 (10:50 am)

    The players: I hope this project will be inclusive and will engage a diversity of people. It’s best to have input from many different kinds of people, not primarily just from white males.

    Any art?: The project really should incorporate some ART that the community will notice and admire.

    Funding: This project carries a hefty pricetag that is being shouldered by the taxpayers. We’re in tough economic times and funding for this project may be competing against important services, such as community center operations and housing and clinic health care. Is this the best timing for an expensive skatepark??

    Just putting some issues on the table for discussion…

  • Pete January 15, 2009 (11:24 am)

    If not now – when?

    This is a very important project that needs our widespread community support.

    There should be an excelent chance that this can be funded through the Opportunity Fund of the recently passed Parks levy if not sooner through regular Parks funding sources.

    This is a project that should have been funded years ago and waiting for better times is not the answer to this issue in my opinion.

  • Nants January 15, 2009 (12:24 pm)


    Players: Agree 100%. It’s not just white males, though more inclusion is a good goal. Everyone involved is open to expanding our reach. We need to reach representative neighbors, skaters, and so on. Cards are mailed, there are email lists, and several websites publicize meetings, etc. If you have ideas on how to reach out even more, please consider becoming active. There are a few ways to do so. Visit for meetings, etc. You don’t have to be a skater to participate!

    Funding: Yes. This is hard. Especially as I listened this morning to news that the State is cutting half of the paltry number of residential drug rehab beds in order to meet just last year’s budget deficit. Whether that’s wise or not, it’s a stark contrast. If it was just a question of that, I’d be hard pressed to support any improved amenities over health. But it’s more complex than that. The money that would build the park would not come from a pot of money that would fund health or social services. So, it won’t be a matter of mental health care or a skate park. The question is do we believe in providing healthy, safe environments for kids to do something they want to do, and will do regardless of whether it’s safe? I think providing those places for youth is critically important especially in difficult times.

  • Nants January 15, 2009 (12:28 pm)

    P.S. I just want to comment on the article’s selected photo. Not only did Shapiro sit with skate boarders, but he also sat and talked with a table of neighbors for quite a long time. And there were several tables of non-skaters who had ideas of things they wanted or liked. It’s been a very open process.

  • WSB January 15, 2009 (12:56 pm)

    We have a video pan that shows the whole meeting, few people click on those so I didn’t upload it — and the room was pretty dark — but if there’s interest I can add. The pic actually seemed kind of cool to me – too often there are meetings WITHOUT lots of stakeholder participation.

  • d January 15, 2009 (3:25 pm)

    Thanks for making the distinction about competing funding sources.

    Though I would have loved to have seen one of the big skate designs assigned to the newly capped reservoir at Westcrest, I’m glad that at least they’ve considered WS at large and The Valley, for sure.

    On the other hand, now there is a huge expanse of VIEW surface to work with at Westcrest and, as far as I am aware there is nothing specifically tapped for that space. Am I wrong about that? I know a couple of years ago there was a “Visioning” forum for the reservoir rebuild, but since then, I don’t know what has transpired.

    Anyway, in regards to the Skatepark, I think that in spite of the dim times we are in, it would be ideal to be able to invest in amenities for parks for all, but especially for the high-density housing kids who are now young. Good grief, pre-teens and adolescents need space to exercise more than any other age group which would utilize a public park space. And, I’ve got to wonder whether the current housing development designs are providing that in the design of individuals townhomes/ houses. Certainly not the townhomes I have seen, by in large.

    If folks would bear in mind how many younger kids are currently in those yardless townhomes, they might see the value in this skatepark going in sooner rather than later. They are going to hit active adolescence faster than we can blink an eye. This park could be well in place to receive those pre-teens and teens.

    I hope my neighborhood association extends themselves toward your group in recognition of the kid’s who live in these neighborhoods and will be served by such a most excellent public project.

    And, yeah, it’s very cool that those kids in the picture are contributing. Yeah for cool kids!

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