The long-anticipated expansion at the popular X-Treme Skate Park on James Street begins this week.
New Line Skate Parks has designed the approximately $200,000 expansion project that will add about 6,000 square feet to the park, adjacent to the Cowichan Aquatic Centre and Cowichan Community Centre, and will accommodate different skill levels for boarders, bikes and scooters.
The expansion has been designed with the users in mind, as the Municipality of North Cowichan invited the community to the table on numerous occasions last year gathering feedback from those that use the park the most; park users and Cowichan Secondary School students.
Construction of the expansion project is expected to be completed in April.
“This skate park is due for an upgrade and we’re happy to see construction start to take place,” said Ernie Mansueti, North Cowichan’s general manager of community services.
“The extensive input we received from the community has been used to produce a design that we’re really excited about. It’s going to be a great addition to this space.”
The existing skate park, co-owned by North Cowichan and the City of Duncan who will share the costs of the expansion, was constructed in 1997 for $125,000.
The park is considered a key recreational facility in the region and is well-used by boarders, scooters and bikers.
In a report to North Cowichan’s council in 2016 when the expansion project was first envisioned, Mansueti said users have continuously requested that the park be upgraded or expanded to meet the numerous advances in skate-park designs.
The current location and property allows for expansion to the north in an area that is presently underutilized, and is well suited for an expansion.
The expansion of the park at this location also has a number of advantages, including increasing utilization of the property, open and visible site lines, parking, nearby public washrooms, lights, proximity to a high school, a bus stop and it is centrally located.