PERCY Doyle Reserve in Duncraig has been flagged as a possible site for a skateboard and BMX facility.
Last August, the Joondalup council requested a report on developing a skate park at Percy Doyle to provide a youth recreation facility.
Cr Russ Fishwick moved the motion following “requests from local youth and their parents for the provision of more challenging recreational facilities for youth within Duncraig and the surrounding area”.
“In particular, the provision of a skate park located within Percy Doyle Reserve was cited as being potentially a great recreational attraction for the youth of the district,” he said.
Councillors voted 11-1 at last month’s meeting to initiate the development of a BMX, skate and outdoor youth recreation facility strategy to inform future development of facilities within the City.
Cr Fishwick said there were many advantages to skate parks, including providing a “safe place to recreate” that was “fiscally conservative and requires very little maintenance” and was “under-served in the area”. He said because Percy Doyle was a regional park accommodating many sports and was located away from residential properties, it “loomed as a good site”.
However, Cr Nige Jones, who voted against the motion, said he had a reservation about a skate park at Percy Doyle Reserve.
“As a past soccer coach, I know how space is at a premium down there and I think the space could be better used for Sorrento Football Club to accommodate the vast amount of juniors they have playing there,” he said.
Planning and community development director Dale Page said at the council briefing the strategy would consider all possible locations.
“We will develop some criteria and we will assess every reserve against those criteria and come up with a recommendation,” she said.
Joondalup Mayor Troy Pickard said the strategy would not just focus on BMX and skate facilities.
“We also want to ensure this strategy looks at the provision of new equipment for these youth spaces and this could include parkour courses, outdoor table tennis tables and basketball hoops,” he said.
“The age of the Kinross Skate Park and current usage of some of our BMX tracks will also mean the development of a strategy helps the City rationalise its assets and strategically plan the potential future development of any new facilities.”
At the meeting, Duncraig resident and “lifetime skateboarder” Todd Griffiths commended the idea of a skate and BMX facility at Percy Doyle.
He said skate parks had “maintained their popularity with young and, in my case, ageing users defying generational trends”.
He said skateboarders were not “an antisocial subculture outside the general populous”.
“Skateboarding and BMX facilities provide a safe venue for socially responsible teen risk taking behaviour, especially for adolescent male residents, and produce fit, calm young people who can manage fear and stress,” he said.
“Given the low cost and high usage rates, one is left wondering why there aren’t as least as many skateboard and BMX facilities in well managed local council areas as there are football fields and basketball courts.”
The council agreed to list $55,000 for consideration in the draft 2017-18 budget for consultancy services and $5000 for community consultation to enable the development of the strategy.