Work has started on the multi-use path for the new West Highlands Park in Aberdeen. But there will be one element missing: a longboard park.
Actually, it’s not missing. It’s just being built elsewhere.
City parks, culture and recreation director Byron McCorkell told council Tuesday the space that was to be allocated for the park wouldn’t be big enough for anything but a junior-sized longboard course.
“We don’t think this is the best place to do a longboard track and we’d like to explore the area in the P-1 zone by Pacific Way elementary,” he said.
The City is working with a group of longboarders to develop the course, he said.
One of the original members of that group, Patrick Mutrie, said afterward the new location is actually better and longboarders are excited at the prospect.
“This is incredible,” he said.
“This is a first worldwide.”
By that, Mutrie — who has competed in longboard races internationally — meant the first collaboration between a municipality and a longboard group to build a track.
“This park is huge.”
The dedicated longboard space would reduce conflicts on the roads and it’s near a bus route, he said.
Mutrie is a big advocate of longboarders wearing helmets and following the rules of the road. He wants to mentor newcomers to the sport and the new space is the perfect place to do that.
As for the rest of West Highlands Park, McCorkell said the City will be consulting with the neighbourhood about what can be done with what’s left of the budget for park amenities.
It will have the path/trail that goes around the perimeter, a couple of viewpoints and two soccer fields.