Skateboarders of all ages continued to lament the loss of the Belmont skate park

West Shore skatepark hopes move closer to becoming reality

West Shore Parks and Recreation to investigate Juan de Fuca site for new facility

It could be a while before West Shore skateboarders and BMXers can drop into a quarter pipe or pull off a sweet nosegrind on the site of the Juan de Fuca recreation centre in Colwood, but local enthusiasts are celebrating a first step towards achieving that end.

Earlier this month, West Shore Parks and Recreation approved a potential site near The Q Centre and the golf course for a future skatepark. A concept design will now be requested to verify the site’s feasibility.

“The board has said yes, let’s move ahead and get some more information. Let’s find out if we can build one there,” said Linda Barnes, West Shore Parks and Recreation Society’s administrator.

The society has been in regular contact with the Westshore Skatepark Coalition and Barnes said those discussions will continue to ensure any designs are met favourably by the park’s potential users. Having a cohesive voice from the public, she added, has been “essential.”

“We wouldn’t build something like this without that kind of input. We don’t want to build a park that kids don’t want to play on,” she said.

“We want to find the best use of that space and make it as friendly as possible for as many kids as possible.”

Jimmy Miller, president of the coalition, was pleased with the news that West Shore Parks and Rec has decided to explore a potential site.

“It means that our efforts haven’t gone unnoticed. That there’s a sympathetic ear and a recognition of the purpose of our plight. It’s a very validating step,” he said.

Since its formation early last year, the coalition has met with the West Shore’s five municipalities in a campaign to bring a skate park back to the area after the park near the former Belmont secondary was closed in October 2015.

The Juan de Fuca site would be ideal for many reasons, according to Miller.

“It makes a great spot because of the amenities nearby,” he said, pointing to washrooms and first aid stations in the immediate vicinity and the potential for lighting.

The many other recreation facilities in the area also make it convenient for parents wishing to give their kids some time at the park while they engage in other activities, Miller continued.

“It’s a good fit in my mind.”

As for design, Miller and the coalition, all of whom are skateboarders, plan to engage with BMXers and other potential users in order to submit their hopes for any eventual plan.

“It’s a large enough site that it could facilitate a bowl or a plaza-type street skatepark,” he noted.

Eventually, Miller would like to see a satellite park or two around the region, but he’s trying not to get ahead of himself and he recognizes that an initial park could still be a ways away.

The Victoria resident has been involved in previous skate park initiatives in the past. His passion for the sport is what has led him to get involved in projects, such as on the West Shore, that might not directly impact either he or his skateboarding children.

“I’ve been advocating for skate parks since I was a 10 year-old kid … if there’s a skateboard cause, I believe in it,” he said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: Furry, four-legged donors make their way to doggy blood drive in Langford

WAVES and Canadian Animal Blood Bank host blood drive for dogs

VicPD confirms wolf sighting in James Bay

Police ask that children and pets be taken inside

Colwood hosts open house on future of Royal Bay community

Event takes place on Jan. 22 at Royal Bay Secondary from 6 to 8 p.m.

Sidney woman promises to pay back anonymous donor who covered her back rent

Zora Hlevnjak faced eviction after refusing to repay money earned collecting cans

Annual Salmon Carcass Transplant draws Saanich residents to Douglas Creek

More than 100 frozen salmon tossed into the creek as part of ecological restoration

‘Presumptive case’ of coronavirus in Canada confirmed by Ontario doctors

Man in his 50s felt ill on his return to Canada from Wuhan, China

VIDEO: Drone footage shows extent of damage in Highway 4 rockslide

Tofino, Ucluelet still cut off from rest of the island, as crews work to repair roadway

People knowingly take fentanyl so make policy changes to reduce harm: B.C. study

Dr. Jane Buxton, an epidemiologist at the centre, says drug users need more resources,

‘My heart is going to bleed’: Bodies brought back to Canada following Iran plane crash

Remains of Sahar Haghjoo, 37, and her eight-year-old daughter, Elsa Jadidi, were identified last weekend

UBC grad and sister killed in Iran plane crash had bright futures ahead, close friend says

Asadi-Lari siblings Mohammad Hussein and Zeynab were two of 57 Canadians aboard downed Flight PS752

BCLC opens novelty bet on Harry and Meghan moving to the west coast

Meanwhile, real estate agency points to four possible homes for the family

Canada slips in global corruption ranking in aftermath of SNC-Lavalin scandal

The country obtained a score of 77, which places it at the top in the Americas

Wuhan bans cars, Hong Kong closes schools as coronavirus spreads

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said her government will raise its response level to emergency, highest one

Most Read