THE San Remo and Newhaven district would become a regional hub for skateboarders, under a draft plan released by the Bass Coast Shire Council.
The Bass Coast Shire Skate Strategy recommends prioritising a new $1.2 million+ skate park for the area, capable of holding large interstate competitions and events.
The shire already has three skate parks in Wonthaggi, Cowes and Inverloch. There is also a mini ramp at Newhaven and a mobile skate ramp which moves around the Waterline area.
If the project proceeds, council will pick a site at either San Remo or Newhaven before 2020, with construction between 2020 and 2023.
The strategy says the regional facility would need to be easily accessible by public transport and cars, cater to all levels of skaters, and cover approximately 1000m².
“The facility should contain adequate event space and infrastructure including seating options, power and lighting for events, programming for competitions and demonstrations,” the strategy reads.
It also recommends major renewal works at the Cowes skate park or elsewhere in the town, to build a simple design providing the basic skate fundamentals.
The strategy notes if council decides to upgrade the Cowes existing skate park, passive surveillance will need to be improved, as well as other issues.
Also before 2020, council wants to address all high-priority safety issues to increase the lifespan of the Wonthaggi skate park.
Wonthaggi has the highest proportion of young people in the shire, with 21 per cent of the population aged between five and 25.
This is followed by Inverloch, Cowes and Cape Woolamai.
The strategy notes because of the high youth population in Wonthaggi, the skate park will need to expand to become a district facility.
“It will allow for skill progression from a beginner to advanced level, with challenging obstacles that maintain interest,” the strategy reads.
“A district facility can have the capacity to host small events, competitions or demonstrations, and should consider providing seating options and viewing areas for a family friendly space.
“Power and lighting are preferable, but not necessary for the facility to function properly.”
The $550,000 to $850,000 expansion project is further down the list of priorities, in the long-term between 2023 and 2026.
It’s a similar situation for Inverloch. While council wants to fix the safety issues before 2020, the strategy recommends holding off until 2023 before beginning construction.
It would involve bulldozing the existing skate park to build a new one, as it’s estimated to be around the same cost to upgrade or start from scratch.
The $250,000 to $450,000 project would provide the essential features for people to learn the basics of skateboarding and would have one obstacle.
The Waterline area is also expected to benefit, with new ‘incidental’ facilities recommended to be constructed in Corinella and Grantville before 2020.
The incidental facilities are simple, minimal features such as a rail, manual pad or mini ramp.
Other priorities include a new local facility at Kilcunda (2020–2023) and a new local facility at Grantville (2023–2026).