Municipality looks to confirm location for skate park by February

A rendering of what the skate park could look like. File photo.

Sun Peaks Mountain Resort Municipality (SPMRM) is working towards confirming the physical four corners of the planned new skate park.

Earlier this month, the Sun Peaks Skate Park (SPSP) Foundation presented a letter to council encouraging them to establish a location for the park. After a brief discussion at the council meeting on Oct. 19, SPMRM’s chief administrative officer, Shane Bourke, reached out to SPSP to inform them they are hoping to approve the location by February 2022.

“Previously, council had approved some land over on our east school and recreation site—it’s some undeveloped land on the east side of Sun Peaks—but they hadn’t identified the specific coordinates,” said Bourke. “Nailing down the specific survey boundaries is just a piece that we have to work on.”

As the land is the municipality’s main space for the future school building and related recreation facilities, Bourke said it will require a transfer agreement with the School District 73 to begin planning the site. They must also ensure to leave enough land for other recreational facilities the community might want in the future. 

“We’re just going through that with council on what are some priorities to make sure we keep enough land to fit everything in, but also let people move forward with their own plans,” said Bourke. “[The skate park] is still a fairly large project and there’s still a substantial amount of fundraising that has to occur, so we want to help with this piece of it,” said Bourke. 

The SPSP Foundation was founded in 2012 to create a free, safe skateboard infrastructure in the village that is community-focused. Since then, they have raised almost $60,000 entirely through community fundraising. SPMRM has also promised $50,000 in matching funds.

Olivia Martin, SPSP’s communications director, said the community has demonstrated a strong desire for the skate park and they have seen an acceleration of incoming funds in the last few years.  The foundation now needs to turn to grants to raise the remaining costs of nearly $400,000.

“We can’t finish the fundraising because obviously that last piece is so large,” said Martin. “It makes the most sense for it to come from corporate, private or public grants and bursaries. But we’re not eligible for those until the physical four corners of the park has been established.”

When a location is confirmed, Martin said SPSP will be able to move ahead with design and engineering, which will make them eligible for grants that could cover the remaining costs.

Bourke said the municipality is happy to establish the exact coordinates for the skate park so SPSP can continue to raise money.

“This has been a very enthusiastic group and council’s been happy to support them,” he said. “We do encourage them and the community to keep up with fundraising so they can start this project.”

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