The Carpinteria City Council unanimously approved a construction contract for the Carpinteria Skate Park project earlier this month, paving the way for a new facility “designed with families in mind.”
“Our youth are a very important part of our community. A community skate park will be a great addition to our park system,” Councilmember Gregg Carty said. “Our youth are too important to let this slip by.”
The council approved a nearly $2.09 million contract to Lash Construction Inc. as well as authorized a transfer of funds from the special projects reserve account to fund the project during its March 14 meeting. (The city needed to authorize about $700,000 in additional funds from the reserve account to fund the project.)
The vote earned thunderous applause from those in the audience.
“It’s overwhelmingly reassuring to know that the city council is unanimously in favor of supporting the community in this way,” Peter Bonning, vice president of the Carpenteria Skate Foundation, told the News-Press. “This is a tangible representation of their desire to make the community a better place.”
Mr. Bonning noted the effort to approve the skate park was community-driven.
The park will be a 30,000 square foot multi-use recreational facility that will sit on the City Hall grounds, Mr. Bonning said. About 20,000 square feet will be used for skating, complete with a stage in the middle for DJs or bands, and the rest of the space will be filled with trees, picnic areas, water bottle filling stations, restrooms and more.
“It’s a multi-use family park with skating at its center,” Mr. Bonning said, saying the community asked for a place for families to congregate that would “break down barriers that prevent people from community openly.”
“Skateboarding is an accessible activity. We wanted to leverage that accessibility,” he added.
Julia Mayer with the Carpinteria Skate Foundation said the park would show young people the community cares about their mental health as it will give them an outlet to express their creativity and be themselves — especially during a time when COVID-19 has closed so much over the past few years.
The bid was about 50% over an engineer’s earlier estimate. However, Councilmember Carty said he believed the original estimate to be “way too low.”
The foundation so far has raised about $1.1 million through grassroots efforts. And Ms. Mayer vowed to “overturn every cushion on every couch in Carpinteria” to find extra funding if needed.
According to a council staff report, the notice to proceed is expected to be issued in April with a construction closeout date estimated for January 2023.