Vail’s decommissioned skate park may go to Eagle
EAGLE — Vail’s decommissioned skate park may get a second lease on life in the town of Eagle. Vail has offered to donate the park equipment and Eagle is interested in the donation.
“We are still working out the logistics, but we are very interested. We view this is a great opportunity,” said Eagle Town Manager Jon Stavney.
For the past eight years, Vail has set up the skate park on the top level of the Lionshead parking structure. Because the community is building a permanent park, set to open in 2016, it has decommissioned the structure. Stavney said that Eagle Mayor Yuri Kostick recently discussed the possibility of the town accepting the park equipment as a donations and when he followed up with Vail Public Works, Stavney confirmed the town could have the park “for free.”
That’s not to say setting it up would be a cost-free project.
Stavney noted that it could cost as much as $100,000 for Eagle to lay down a concrete slab large enough to hold all the park equipment. Additionally, it would cost around $25,000 to set up the park in Eagle. Because of these costs, Stavney noted Eagle hasn’t yet decided exactly how it would configure the park — perhaps setting up only some of the structures.
In his discussions with the town of Vail, Stavney learned the following:
The park was built by Hazard County Construction (Georgia) in the spring of 2007 for an initial cost of $160,000, and was upgraded the following year with $13,300 in upgrades.
• Structure is sound, made of metal base parts, treated wood frame, plywood and topped with skatelite. This is all sound according to Vail staff, with the caveat that the screws often work their way out because the structure has been assembled and disassembled so many times. This could be solved with a permanent installation and larger screws. The other annual cost issue is the plywood which gets softened from use.
• Total annual maintenance varies from year to year but is mostly related to reassembly and plywood replacement. These costs have been well below $5,000 per year.
• In Vail, structure is disassembled for $13,000 and reassembled every year at a total cost of $38,000. Hazard County Construction does the work, and provides an annual report which is passed on to the town’s insurance carrier. The insurance company has had not issues with the park construction or operation.
• Features in the structure are not continuous, and require a hard surface, preferably smooth concrete, for transition skating. Recommended slab size is 60 by 230 feet. This is about twice the size of Eagle’s tennis court, for perspective.
Finding a home
The Eagle Town Board recently voted to accept the donation and figure out the particulars later. The biggest issue is where the park can be located in both the short-term and the long-term.
“I’ve asked at Eagle Ranch if they would give up a parking area for a year or two and was told they need the parking,” said Stavney.
He noted the other large parking areas in town that could accommodate the skate park would be the Western Eagle County Metropolitan Recreation District fields, the Eagle County Justice Center back lot and private property across from the justice center.
In the longer term, Stavney said the most logical location for the skate park is the Eagle Pool and Ice Rink site. However, he noted that property has not been master planned and spending $100,000 on a concrete pad there is likely premature. In the meantime, Eagle plans to store the equipment and find at least a temporary home for at least some of the features.
“(Hazard County Construction) will be disassembling the structure the first week of October. After disassembly, all costs, including transport to Eagle and reassembly, would be our responsibility,” said Stavney.
Vail Resorts Chief Executive Officer Rob Katz and his wife, Elana Amsterdam, have announced significant contributions totaling more than $2.8 million to further strengthen emotional wellness programs in more than 10 mountain communities where Vail Resorts operates.