• Wed March 26 2008
  • Posted Mar 26, 2008
By TODD ERZEN REGISTER STAFF WRITER Spring is here, and not far behind is an east-side skate park. The 6,000-square-foot, $275,000 project taking shape at the Four Mile Community Center on Easton Boulevard was originally scheduled to be completed last fall but now should be up and running by Memorial Day. "This is the first skateboard park in Des Moines and we think it is long overdue," said Des Moines Parks and Recreation director Don Tripp. "We think people are going to love it." The delay on the skate park, which will be for skateboard and in-line skate users, was due largely to the mother of all construction delays: Bad weather. The contractor the city is using for the project is bound by what is called a "working day" contract, meaning it has a specific number of working days - in this case 40 - to complete the project. Weekends, holidays and bad weather days do not count. A total of 20 days were used last fall, leaving the same left to work with once the ground thaws. The earth on the west side of the community center has already been formed to fit the needs of the skate park, leaving it ready for concrete to be poured immediately. Parks and recreation department staff has been working with a Skate Park Citizen Advisory Committee to develop policies regarding use of the skate park. It has been suggested that the facility be open from 6 a.m. to sunset, and the site will be monitored by Web camera to ensure safety and appropriate behavior through a link at Since work on the skate park began, local bicycle riders have been approaching Four Mile Community Center staff members regarding its potential use as a venue for their sport. No-go, said Marlene Anderson, parks and recreation department representative. "The facility's designer has stated it was designed for skateboard and in-line skates only and not for bicycle use; therefore, the policy of prohibiting bicycles was recommended by the Skate Park Citizen Advisory Committee and staff," Anderson said. AMOS, an organization of local churches, has supported the effort to develop and install skate park facilities in the Des Moines' park system and said it has now moved on to doing the same for bike riders who enjoy using ramp-like structures to perform aerial tricks. The addition of the skate park fills a void left when a skateboard half-pipe, which is a U-shaped ramp, was removed from its Easton Boulevard location near Kmart about two years ago.

  • Source:
  • Author:
  • Posted By: