By: Zachary Lopez (ZachNews):
Sources: Needles Recreation Manager Jennifer Valenzuela and Needles City Manager Rick Daniels (Information):
Needles, California: Members of the Needles Recreation and Parks Commission discussed new fencing and upgrading the security system at the Needles Skate Park during their meeting on Thursday, February 25th, 2021 at the popular skate park.
According to the Staff Report from the City of Needles, the site visit of the skate park is for information on the fencing project and current security system. The current outer fencing that encloses the skate park is rotting and needs replaced in large sections. It will be replaced with chain link at a cost of approx. $3000 in materials with the labor done in-house. Discussion on the current security system and the handling of the vandalism issues.
According to the Staff Report from the City of Needles, the Fiscal Impact is $3000+ for the new fencing.
According to the Staff Report from the City of Needles, the Recommendation is this is an information only agenda item, no action is needed from members of the Needles Recreation and Parks Commission.
*** Agenda Packet: Agenda Item #2 (Information Only): ***
Members of the Needles Recreation and Parks Commission along with Needles City Council Member Kirsten Merritt and Zachery Longacre, City of Needles Director of Development Patrick Martinez, and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station Captain Ross Tarangle walked over from the Needles City Council Chambers to the Needles Skate Park to better show what is needing to occur at the skate park.
The field trip meeting of the Needles Recreation and Parks Commission at the Needles Skate Park was recorded and posted to Facebook by ZachNews.
Needles City Manager Rick Daniels discussed the replacing the old, rotting and damaged gate around the skate park with a new fencing either along the outside edge of the walkway that surrounds the skate park; upgrading the security system including the near by camera to make the camera video feed clearer to catch those who try to vandalize the skate park as well as move them around to pick up the WiFi signal; and cleaning up and painting over the graffiti that tags along the bowl of the skate park.
There was also discussions about a skate park event held in May 2019 by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station in an effort to helped in making the skate park a crime-free zone, and how that event stopped for a few days problem calls to the skate park.
There were also suggestions that were brought up during the meeting related to the skate park, including putting a new fence along Flip Mendez Parkway for the skate park and baseball field at Duke Watkins Park instead just surrounding the skate park; maybe putting a wall or set a location within the skate park for art work murals by local skaters to show off their art work; and putting together an award policy to help catch skate park vandals.
On Tuesday, February 23rd, 2021, Needles City Manager Rick Daniels spoke about the condition and problems that have occurred at the Needles Skate Park during the Needles City Council Meeting inside the Needles City Council Chambers about fights, bullying and misbehaving at the skate park as well as vandalism including graffiti on the bowl of the skate park.
During pass meetings, members of the Needles City Council have spoke about the problems that have occurred at the popular Needles Skate Park, speaking about getting reports from those who use the Needles Skate Park about being bullied and property being damaged, as well as reports of misbehaving at night and graffiti tagging along the bowl of the skate park.
According to the City of Needles, the Needles Skate Park is located in Duke Watkins Park at 1500 Flip Mendez Parkway in Needles, California.
Since 2002, the Tony Hawk Foundation has awarded 493 grants to help build free, public skate parks in low-income communities across the U.S. Currently, 417 of those parks are open and serving over 4-million youth annually.
In 2003, the City of Needles received a grant from the Tony Hawk Foundation in the amount of $20,000 to build it’s skate park.
During the grand opening of the Needles Skate Park, skateboarder Tony Hawk showed his skater moves at the Needles Skate Park.
Over the years after opening, the Needles Skate Park has been used by local kids and families as well as those traveling through the community.
The community hopes that the information and suggestions brought up during the meeting will help in not only improving the condition of the skate park, but also improve safety at the skate park so that kids can be able to enjoy the skate park again.
For more information, please contact Needles Recreation Manager Jennifer Valenzuela at: 1 (760) 326-2814.