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Skate park rolls closer to construction in Eastpark

Now that the Bremerton City Council unanimously approved $44,000 to hire Miles Yanick and Co. to design a skateboarding facility in Eastpark, Council President Daren Nygren says they will have an easier chance of securing the $180,000 still needed to construct it.

The approval at the March 17 St. Patrick’s Day City Council meeting was a breath of fresh air for skateboarders long deprived of adequate recreation territory in the city.

The structure, most likely to be sculpted of concrete, will include swooping turns and bowl-like sections, with a total price tag of $300,000.

So far, the Bremerton Central Lions has donated $25,000 to fund the project, and the City of Bremerton’s Community Development Block Grant funding committee has allocated $95,000 more.

“I served on the committee for the Block Grant (CDBG) funding for this, and (the skate park) was the one project that was unanimous among the members of the committee,” said Council representative Will Maupin.

The CDBG money for the skate park was part of a federal allocation to Bremerton and other cities in the nation to encourage projects to create a better living environment.

Bremerton Parks Department Director Jim Spencer said the city was denied a grant it applied for, possibly because they did not have a design completed at the time.

“We think part of that application process is having a definitive design,” said Spencer.

At the Wednesday City Council meeting, Spencer applauded the efforts of the local skate group called Bremerton Skaters and Supporters United (BSSU), who have been advocating for the skate park.

“There’s been a real definitive need within the community for many years to get a skate park in Bremerton,” Spencer said.

In 1996, a skate park was built next to the Kitsap Family YMCA that included wood half pipes and a concrete pyramid. Eventually the wood was taken down and all that remains is a slab of concrete.

BSSU has been led by Bremerton High teacher Lisa Gordon and student Ian McDowell.

BSSU made a Powerpoint presentation to the Lions Club that helped secure $25,000 for the park.

According to Nygren, the skate park would be another wing of recreation opportunities of the proposed Eastpark development. Groundbreaking on up to 300 homes could begin in the next 18 months, he said.

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