Some kids take advantage of one of the last days at Second Haven Skate Park on May 25 before demolition begins this week. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Construction to get underway on new skate park

Project expected to take six months

The Second Haven Skateboard Park is set to close this week as construction gets underway on the new skate park being built on the site.

The building project for the new $3.5-million accessible park is anticipated to take about six months with Castle Rock Enterprises being awarded the contract.

The federal government’s Investing in Canada fund is covering $2.6 million of the cost, with the remaining $1.1 million coming from the territory, which currently owns the land.

After the new park is finished, the City of Whitehorse will take over ownership and maintenance of the site.

The project comes after years of work by the Skate for Life Alliance, pushing for a new park to replace the more than 20-year-old facility amid ongoing safety concerns.

As local Skate for Life Alliance president Joe Zucchiatti recalled in an April interview, it wasn’t initially clear whether the city or territory was responsible for the park.

Eventually, it was determined the territory would rebuild the park with the city then taking over the site and work began on planning for the park users with government and park users like those involved with Skate for Life.

“This project has developed through a great collaboration with the local skateboarding community, the City of Whitehorse and Canada,” Community Services Minister John Striker said. “I’m proud we can help provide a safer, more inclusive park for those who ride skateboards, roller blades, bikes and scooters. I look forward to seeing the park in use”

Zucchiatti has highlighted the new facility as a place he believes will allow all levels of skateboarders, BMXers, those who ride scooters and wheelchair MX athletes to learn and master their skills.

Wheelchair MX athlete Darryl Tait provided substantial input that will see most park features wheelchair accessible, Zucchiatti said.

“It’s inclusive,” he said, describing the new facility as ” a professional-quality park”.

Construction is expected to wrap up in November with the new park then ready for the 2021 season.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at stephanie.waddell@yukon-news.com

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