LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - Work is almost complete at the site of the first skatepark in Longview.
The Longview Parks and Recreation Advisory Board will meet Tuesday via teleconference to discuss naming the latest expansion to the city’s park system.
Once the advisory board picks a name, it will have to be approved by the City Council, and there will be a 30 day public notice period, according to a post on the Skatepark for Longview Facebook page.
The skatepark is being constructed at Ingram Park on Tenth Street. Scott Caron, director of parks and recreation for the City of Longview, said the park will likely open by the end of October.
“We’re a little hesitant on providing dates because you know a lot of the work is being done by volunteers,” he said.
The idea for a skatepark in Longview was first presented more than a year ago by resident Brian Dodson who was a skateboarder and has children who enjoy skateboarding.
“At the time we didn’t have any funding available to be able to do that, so Brian Dodson spearheaded a group and said ‘what would we do if we raised some money and could you guys contribute in some way,'" Caron said. “They started raising some money. They appealed to the City Council, and the City Council said we’ll match your donation up to about $40,000. “So, here we are today with the fruits of their labor and hard work and a little city funding added on top of it.”
The City of Longview’s park system includes miles of walking trails, athletic facilities, playgrounds and pavilions, but Caron said the skatepark will fill a void for people who don’t enjoy “stick-and-ball sports.”
“They enjoy being on a bike. They enjoy skateboarding and those kinds of things. There are a lot of those kids out there that are like that, but they don’t have an outlet for it unless they’re in areas where people don’t want them, and that’s unfortunate for everybody,” Caron said. "They understand it, but they need a place to play and have some fun in a safe environment, and that’s why this is here.”
Ingram Park is at 1400 N. Tenth St.
“We see a lot of the signs that say ‘no skateboarding’, ‘no rollerblading’ and those kinds of things, so, to have a facility that is specifically designed for that group, is pretty phenomenal.”