Residents Ready to Oppose South Portland Skate Park Plan
South Portland's Skate Park Advisory Committee is ready to pitch. Tuesday night, they will bring the findings of their 20-site evaluation to the City Council meeting in the form of their top three pitches: Legere Park, Mahoney Middle School fields, and High School Park, according to the Press Herald.
Legere Park is an unsurprising first choice for the committee, as the location was first brought to the council as a potential site for a new municipal skate park two years ago in a petition signed by 577 people. However, residents and business owners along the bordering Waterman Drive have complained that a new skate park would disrupt the development of Knightville neighborhood's up-and-coming vibe and the ambiance of the Mill Creek shopping area.
Now is the council's chance to hear what residents have to say about the committee's findings and to instruct to 10-person committee on how to move forward.
“It will be up to the council to guide them on whether we want to pursue one or more of the top-rated sites, or pursue one of the sites that did not rise to that level,” said Councilor Kate Lewis, who sits on the committee.
Legere Park ranked highly on the Skate Park Advisory Committee's list of locations because it's a highly visible location near public transit and would complement the park's playground and basketball court, in addition to potential funding opportunities if built in Knightville neighborhood.
Jeff Woodbury, another councilman on the advisory committee, skates often with his kids and pointed out that a skate park should be in the middle of everything, as opposed to being built in a tucked-away location. This way, it's safer for kids to hang out at and easier for the city to maintain.