St. Paul carves out possible skate park at Arlington-Arkwright


Andrew Vega, 17, of St. Paul, does a trick at St. Paul's new Front Skate Park. With the new skate park in there, the park's old equipment may be resurfaced and moved over to the East Side. (Patrick Larkin/Review)
East Side skateboarders and aggressive skaters could be in luck -- the East Side may get ramps, rails and quarter pipes of its own.
 
With the city's Front Skate Park getting new gear, St. Paul Parks and Recreation is looking to move the old Front Avenue equipment to the city park at Arlington and Arkwright.
 
The equipment would be resurfaced, and new concrete would be poured at the East Side park to make for a fairly fresh-looking skate facility.
 
Jody Martinez, manager of design and construction at St. Paul Parks and Recreation, said the East Side could use some skate facilites. With only two skate parks in the city, East Side skaters have to travel a good distance to skate. The Front Skate Park is the closest, and it's well into the Midway neighborhood.
 
Martinez said parks staff have heard plenty from East Side skaters who regularly use the facilities at Front Avenue. 
"They said 'We'd sure like to see one on the East Side,'" Martinez said.
 
The skate park would replace what's now a well-weathered former tennis practice court.
 
If all goes smoothly, the facilities could go in this fall, Martinez said.
 
Leslie McMurray, director of the Payne-Phalen district council, said there's "a lot of enthusiasm for the skate park."
She added it would provide another activity for teens in the area. She said the community's been discussing adding a skate park for years.
 
McMurray added that if the plans go forward, Parks and Rec will send out postcards to people who live near the park, to let them know skate facilities will be added. 
 
The skate park will be formally voted on at the next Payne-Phalen district council's Community Planning and Economic Development board meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 9.
 
-- Patrick Larkin
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