Plans for a concrete skate park to be built this summer at the Bar Harbor town fields. The features shown in red, blue, yellow and purple may be added at a later date. PHOTO COURTESY OF MDISA

Skate park plan is ready to roll



BAR HARBOR — The Mount Desert Island Skatepark Association (MDISA) is set to begin construction on a concrete skate park at the town athletic fields in August following Town Council approval of project plans Tuesday. The structure can be used for skateboarding, BMX biking, inline skating or scooter riding.

The group has received bids from local firms for the groundwork to be done in August, MDISA board Chair Karen Svenson said. Tempe, Arizona-based Pillar Design Studios, which designed the project, also will serve as the builders for the concrete portion, set to begin Sept. 1.

MDISA now has $65,000 in an account with the town to cover the first phase of the permanent concrete park, along with $4,128 cash toward a contingency fund required by their current memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the town. That balance will cover “Phase I” construction. The master plan includes additional features the group hopes to add.

“We hope to have funds before the groundwork is complete” to add some of the further phases,” board member Katie Churchill told councilors.

“MDISA has secured generously donated housing for the builders, which allows more of our budget to go directly toward concrete features beyond phase I,” Svenson and Churchill said in a letter to councilors. “The park will be nicely landscaped and finished with gently sloping berms from the concrete.”

Any future phases or additions to the park to be built after November 2016, when the current MOU expires, council Chair Paul Paradis said, would require a new MOU.

The design includes dense “engineered fill” surrounding the concrete area. Other layers, including 2-inch foam board, protect the concrete against freezing ground and absorb vibration and noise.

The group has been fundraising and organizing for the several years. In the first MOU between the group and the town, signed in 2007, the town agreed to allocate 8,775 square feet of space at the athletic fields. The current design covers about 8,500 square feet, Churchill said.

The Parks and Recreation Committee approved the design earlier this year. Public Works Director Chip Reeves told councilors he has no concerns about the plan. Since contractors hired for groundwork would be local, he said, they will be familiar with the town’s policies.

Details such as drainage from the structure are not included in the level of construction plans presented so far, Reeves said, but he’ll continue to work with and advise the group on those remaining questions. Svenson said a geotechnical survey of the site has been done.

Visit mdiskatepark.org or MDI Skatepark Association on Facebook.

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