A worker uses a concrete gun to apply “shotcrete” to a section of the new, permanent skate park at the town athletic fields in Bar Harbor. The Mount Desert Island Skatepark Association plans a grand opening for the park Sunday, June 25. ISLANDER PHOTO BY LIZ GRAVES

Grand opening set for permanent skate park

BAR HARBOR — Work is progressing quickly on the concrete skate park under construction at the town athletic fields. A grand opening celebration is set for Sunday, June 25, from 1-3 p.m. at the park.

The Mount Desert Island Skatepark Association has been working for several years to have the park built, raising funds, negotiating agreements with the town and contracting with designers and builders.

The group celebrated the groundbreaking last August, when a crew from Harold MacQuinn Inc. began groundwork on the site. They created an elevated mound of dirt with a gravel foundation.

The Parks and Recreation Committee approved the design earlier this year.

The design includes dense “engineered fill” surrounding the concrete area. Other layers protect the concrete against freezing ground and absorb vibration and noise.

“The groundwork includes installation of underground drainage and preloading the site with ledge and fill to induce settlement of the underlying clay over an eight-month period,” MDISA board Chair Karen Svenson said last year.

A crew from Artisan Skateparks of Kitty Hawk, N.C., arrived in May to begin the final phase of work on the site. They cut down into the dirt mound to shape the park’s half-pipe and other elements. A grid of rebar forms the skeleton.

Workers began applying concrete Tuesday with a pump to spray “shotcrete” into the forms. The surface is smoothed with special tools.

All of the members of the Artisan crew are skateboarders themselves, owner Andy Duck said, so they know which construction details will help make the park better for its users. The structure can be used for skateboarding, BMX biking, inline skating or scooter riding. All users are encouraged to wear helmets. In the event of injury, the skate park is covered by the same town insurance policy as the tennis and baseball courts.

Visit mdiskatepark.org or MDI Skatepark Association on Facebook.




Liz Graves

Liz Graves

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Former Islander reporter and editor Liz Graves grew up in California and came to Maine as a schooner sailor.