200G for Waterford skateboard park

Waterford’s vision for a skateboard park is coming into focus.A location has been selected and a budget has been set.The challenge for the community now is to come up with the $300,000 required to pay for its share of the facility. For its part, Norfolk council this week pledged $200,000.“Seems like a big number,” Kerry Bockenholt, chair of the Waterford Skateboard Park Committee, told council.“But we are a driven group determined to make this happen. Our fundraising committee has developed an ambitious strategic plan which includes amazing community commitment, various events and ongoing grant applications.“In the short time we have been planning, $48,000 has already been raised. We are determined.”Nine locations in Waterford were investigated. Two were selected as candidates: 28 Deer Park Rd., east of Lions Park, and 159 Nichol St., beside the Waterford Heritage and Agricultural Museum.Jars were placed at both locations where community members were encouraged to register their preference. In a report to council, Bill Cridland, Norfolk’s general manager of community services, says the Nichol Street location was the “overwhelming” choice.“Heritage and culture staff are excited for the potential synergies for all partners involved,” Cridland said.Construction is scheduled to begin next year. It will be designed for skateboards, trick bikes, scooters and roller blades.Jean Montgomery, formerly of Waterford and now of Simcoe, confirmed that there is strong community backing for the installation. Nearly 40 individuals, youths, businesses, and organizations are committed to making it a reality, she told council.Waterford Coun. Kim Huffman said the chosen location is dark at night and will need to be well-lit for after-hours enjoyment.“It’s not like it’s going to be near a tennis court or a ball park that would have lighting,” Huffman said. “Lighting will be a very important component of this going forward.”The county’s commitment is pencilled in for 2020. Cridland said these projections are flexible and that – if the project has to wait till 2021 or 2022 – the county money is portable and will be allocated accordingly.MSonnenberg@postmedia.com

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