Plans for a skatepark in Cliftonville will go ahead if Cabinet members approve proposals for a 20-year lease.
The park will be on the former crazy golf site of Ethelbert Crescent and will be run by a CIC set up by Dan Cates and Nic Powley of the Margate Skateboard Club.
It is one of the projects carried out under the £22million Margate Town Deal.
The skatepark proposal received support from the communities of Margate and Cliftonville and the national skateboarding fraternity. A petition supporting the plans has garnered over 3,000 signatures.
It is one of the projects that aims to address some of the health inequalities in the region by promoting physical fitness and well-being, social engagement, local tourism and also job creation.
Margate Skateboard Club is recognized as an expert in its field. They have provided advice and guidance to organizations like Skateboard GB, and they have advised other local authorities on ordering and delivering Skateparks.
Nic is the boss of Skate Pharm and Dan is a veteran skateboarder who works with companies such as Death Skateboards and is part of the Skate Pharm team.
The bid for the new skate park was £1 million. The Town Deal provided £750,000 but there is also matching funding of £100,000 from artist Tracey Emin and £59,000 from the council’s capital program which was previously for a skate park in Margate.
The Margate Skateboard Club will also undertake fundraising for building, community involvement, organizing events and activities at the venue and supporting a program to encourage people of all ages to take up skateboarding to improve their well-being.
Thanet Council owns the site which previously housed ‘Little Oasis Skate Park’ built by skateboarders and operational during the summer of 2013. The park was razed by Thanet Council in 2014, citing reasons of health and safety.
Thanet council said it would potentially waive estimated annual rent of around £10,000-£15,000 or possible sale proceeds of £100,000-£150,000. However, there are restrictions on the use of the site, with significant implications for development, and although it has previously been commercialized, the land has not attracted interest.
The development of the skatepark will be carried out by the council, according to the Cabinet document.
Plans for Margate Skateboard Club include restrooms and a kiosk with the kiosk having a hub for CIC staff to support community engagement activities and deliver health and wellness programs.
Revenues from the kiosk will be used to maintain the toilets and the Skatepark, covering running and maintenance costs.
Council cabinet members are expected to give their approval for a 20-year rent-free lease to be established alongside the creation of the CIC.
Council documents indicate that if the project appears to be over budget, the Skatepark will need to be reduced or additional funding secured by the project sponsors.
The plans will be discussed at a Cabinet meeting on February 22.