New site sought for downtown skate park after price hike

(Source: MGN Online)
(Source: MGN Online)

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Charleston County Parks and Recreation Commission officials say they have set their sights on the Charleston Co. Recycling Center after plans to construct a skate park underneath the Ravenel Bridge fell through due to additional costs.

Tom O'Rourke with CCPRC says they originally planned to build a 40,000-square-foot skate park underneath the Ravenel Bridge, but plans changed after speaking with the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT).

O'Rourke says the SCDOT asked for greater concrete thickness and more drainage solutions, shrinking their plans of a $2 million 40,000-square-foot site to a $3.5 million 15,000-square-foot site.

While O'Rourke says the door is not completely shut on the Ravenel Bridge site, they have found another prospective spot for the skate park on Romney Street at the Charleston Co. Recycling Center.

O'Rourke says he has been going back-and-forth with Charleston Co. Administrator Kurt Taylor about the possibility of building downtown's first skate park at the recycling center, but there has been no commitment from the county.

"It's going really good. We think we have the future site but it's going much slower than we like," O'Rourke said.

One reason the process is moving slowly is because the recycling center on Romney Street is still in use. Charleston Co. is looking for an alternate site for the center, but they have not identified candidates.

Although a lot of time has already passed, O'Rourke says he is willing to wait longer if necessary in order to find the best spot for the new skate park.

"The public wants this," said O'Rourke. "We want it for them. This is the perfect site. The building is great and the County really wants to help."

O'Rourke says the City of Charleston has been a tremendous help throughout the entire process of identifying sites after under the bridge fell through.

O'Rourke met with Taylor on Tuesday of this week. There are no plans for additional meetings at this time.

Copyright 2013 WCSC.  All rights reserved.