Malibu Surfside News

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Consultant’s Feasibility Study Describes Possible Sites for Malibu Skate Park

• Two Dozen Criteria Were Applied to Location that Could Become Major Local Attraction for Skateboarders

BY BILL KOENEKER

The city’s Parks and Recreation Commission met on Tuesday night this week after the Malibu Surfside News went to press.
Although on the agenda, it was simply billed as the director's update on skatepark projects, and with little fanfare it was apparently an opportunity for the commission to learn more about what is in the works.
The document is called the Malibu Bluffs Park Skate Park Facility Site Assessment produced by the consultant hired by the city, Wormhoudt Inc.
The feasibility study outlines six proposed sites, which are all located in the southernmost section in the park overlooking Malibu Road.
“This site assessment evaluates six potential locations for a skate park within Bluffs Park. Each site has been selected based on the concept that a skate park could be built at the site and the existing park uses could be substantially operated and maintained in their current configuration,” the report  states.
Using over two dozen criteria developed specifically for the Bluffs Park, the six sites were ranked in a matrix with each site described explaining the significant benefits and potential disadvantages.
Site number four was given the highest marks and site number three was ranked the second highest site.
Site number four has the most suitable configuration and topography for developing a permanent skate park facility, according to the study.
 It also has the greatest potential for being developed with the least amount of potential impacts to the nearby Environmentally Sensitive Habitat Areas and it is the least likely site to have potential impacts on the adjacent off-site uses, according to the report.
“The existing park uses adjacent to site number four the multi-use fields, pony baseball field and play structure are a ‘good fit’ for a skate park facility. The locations, surrounded by high activity use, integrate the skate park with these other activities without compromising valuable green space in the ‘bluffs’ area of the park.
“This site is also dynamic because visitors could enjoy various family oriented recreation activities in nearby park areas,” the report goes on to state.
The conclusion of the study is that site four could accommodate a permanent skate park facility up to 8000 square feet in size and is recommended for preliminary engineering and design development.
“Said work shall proceed contingent upon the design successfully providing a strong sense of place and a positive total site experience for all park users while meeting the design criteria that has been established for the project as defined,” the report concludes
For more than 12 years, the city maintained a land use agreement with private property owners for an above ground skate park.
In 2010, the city received a notice of termination requiring the skate park to be closed near the end of 2011.
Since then skaters have been without a park as city officials and various committees and commissions met to determine how and where to go for a replacement.
A temporary park was scratched and the city has continued with the idea of a permanent park at Bluffs Park. Last year, the city chose a consultant for design services for a permanent park for assessing the most suitable location for a skate park within Bluffs Park.

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