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Pop-up skate space confirmed for club members

Napier Skating Club members will continue to train and skate recreationally, thanks to a Napier City Council initiative.

The Council spent considerable time last month searching for a suitable property to house a pop-up skate space, in an effort to bridge the gap between the closure of Sk8 Zone and the opening of the new Napier Skate Park, scheduled for late 2016.

Last week, Council confirmed a suitable warehouse site on Faraday Street and signed a lease with the Salvation Army, who owns the building. The cost of the 18 week lease is $10,000, with Napier City Council paying an additional $5,000 directly to Napier Skating Club to operate the site.

The $15,000 committed by Council will come from Council’s Community development project budget.

Community Planning Manager Natasha Carswell is pleased to have negotiated the deal with the Salvation Army and hopes the pop-up will be operational within two weeks.

“The Skating Club has expressed a desire to work with us while they transition to the new build at the former Marineland site. As the completion date is still a few months away, we felt there was a need to accommodate Club skaters elsewhere. This is a good solution – it’s an all-weather indoor space, it was available for the months we required it and it helps to alleviate some of the anxiety Club skaters have been experiencing around the move.”

Napier Skating Club members had been out to visit the site before Napier City Council signed the lease, she said, and were happy with the ceiling height and the building itself. Skaters will need to be Napier Skating Club members to access the space.

Meanwhile, construction on the new facility is on track, with Napier Skating Club helping to finalise the design. Some Club-owned ramps will be moved onto the Marineland site, says Director Community Services Antoinette Campbell, which Council will then refurbish at no cost to the Club, ready for the opening.

“The new development will also support a range of other wheeled sports, such as skateboarding, artistic skating, speed skating, derby and hockey. It’s going to be an amazing facility which will house major events, and draw national and international visitors.”

Who will manage the facility is still up for discussion, says Ms Campbell.

“It’s a multi-million dollar development, and needs to be managed as such. The Napier Skating Club has sought further information on this from us in order to submit a business plan, and we’ve provided that information to them. However we’re still a long way off any decision on management.”

12 May 2017

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