A city skateboarding park is edging toward realization with a notice to bidders for its construction.
The work includes, but is not limited to, the construction of a 7,350 square feet cast-in-place concrete skate park, the notice says. The location is the Madison Avenue playground off West Second Street. Contract documents and plans are available through the city' s Purchasing Division in City Hall, 515 Watchung Ave.Bids will be opened on January 11.
Skateboarders campaigned for their own space in 2013 with a video online and public comment at City Council meetings. The initial proposed location had been a municipal lot on East Fourth Street, but when the city hired Hood Skateparks of Gladstone in July 2016 to design the skate park, the location shifted to the Madison Avenue site. Videographer Lamar Mackson, father of a skateboarder, told the City Council the site was too small. (See Plaintalker II post including video link here.)
Mackson's 2013 video featured skateboarders from Plainfield, North Plainfield and Scotch Plains. They were using the plaza in front of the office building at Park & Front and also the building's parking garage ramps for practice, without permission. The young men explained what skateboarding meant to them and how they risked tickets or arrest to perfect their skills.
To see the complete Notice to Bidders, go to http://www.njpublicnotices.com/ and key skatepark into the search box.
The Madison Avenue park, bounded by Madison Avenue, West Second Street, Central Avenue and the Raritan Valley Line train tracks, recently received an upgrade with a prefabricated set of restrooms. See photos of the installation here.