Papanui skate park sites identified, but could be years before built

SKATER: Owen Mitchell Park on Grimseys Rd has been identified as the most likely location for a skate park in Papanui.

Sites in the Papanui Ward have been identified for a skate park but it could be up to 12 years before anyone gets to use it.

City council staff narrowed the search for the suitable location for a park to Bridgewater Drainage Reserve, Craighead Reserve and Edgar Macintosh Park in Papanui or Owen Mitchell Park and Redwood Park in Redwood.

The Papanui-Innes Community Board is pitching the proposal for inclusion into the city council’s  2019-29 Long Term Plan.

The report said Owen Mitchell Park on Grimseys Rd is the most suitable.

“There is space between the public toilet and playground that has suitable separation and natural surveillance from neighbours.”

More than 20 other sites were identified, including Papanui High School, but were ruled out due to proximity to neighbours or space issues.

The investigation came after the community board responded to calls from young people for a skate park in the area.

“Papanui is very short of youth recreation facilities,” board chairwoman Ali Jones said.

Currently, skaters have to go to St Albans, Burnside, Bishopdale or Belfast to find the closest park.

Ms Jones said the board is throwing around the idea of expanding the concept into a larger indoor youth facility that would include a skate park.

She said that is something that would be looked into further before pitching the proposal for the city council’s 2019-29 Long Term Plan.

 An estimate of required funding for the skate park would be about $360,000 over three years.

In year one, $20,000 would be required for site investigation and selection, engagement with the public and preliminary design.

The second would require $40,000 for more community engagement, detailed design and resource consent.

Construction of the park itself would be about $300,000, which includes free wi-fi. The cost would change if a larger facility was approved.