Waterloo planning 3 new skate parks, bike-circuit park

Waterloo plans to open three new skate parks in the coming years as well as the city’s first bike-circuit park.

The Waterloo Skatepark on Father David Bauer Drive is the only one of its kind at the moment but that will soon change thanks to its popularity.

“Waterloo loves its skateboard park in uptown,” project manager Karen Anderson said. “It’s time to invest in action sports parks closer to key neighbourhoods.”

She says the new skateboard parks at Albert McCormick Community Centre, Stork Family YMCA/John M. Harper Branch Library and RIM Park will be “similar but smaller” than the current location.

The city is referring to the new sites as action sports parks because they are not just designed for skateboard use. In addition, BMX riders and others on scooters are also using them.

In addition to the skateparks, Anderson says there are plans for a dedicated circuit-style bike park at Rim Park Campus.

The city has hired New Line Skateparks Inc. to help with the design of the projects and but is also looking for input from the community.

“We are looking to better understand our neighbourhood groups,” Anderson said. “This is a hard group to capture because they are not organized.”

There is a short survey that will allow residents an opportunity to help shape the parks.

“Our goal right now is raising awareness of the project and collecting ideas from the community within our survey and Instagram submissions,” Anderson said.

In addition, the community can also send ideas through social media channels with the hashtags #waterlooskateparksideas and #waterloobikeparkideas.

Anderson says the city is hoping for visual submissions “from parks other people have been to or may have seen online.”

The city is currently in the initial phase of development and once it gets close to a second phase, it will present the ideas to the public for further input.

There will be an open house when the final drawings are near completion to allow users a chance to give their opinion on how the parks are best designed, Anderson said. There will be a giveaway of skateboards and a bike.

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