What does our group worth? That was a key dialogue level on the Eau Claire Metropolis Council’s assembly on Tuesday, Nov. 9, the place council members unanimously accepted proposed amendments to the 2022-26 Capital Enchancment Plan in an 11-0 vote.
The modifications most notably included an $180,000 allocation towards the 5,000 square-foot skate park at Boyd Park – along with the $20,000 the town already appropriated – bringing the whole metropolis contributions to $200,000, with the remaining $75,000 coming from non-public donations (because of fundraising efforts by the Eau Claire Skaters Affiliation, which has already raised greater than $68,000 for the skate park).
That is very thrilling for the skating group as a result of they’ve labored so arduous to lift funds and advocate for his or her wants and their goals.
Metropolis council member
Whereas the Capital Enchancment Plan covers 2022-26, the planning horizon consists of tasks spanning till 2031, together with the substitute of the Gibson Avenue parking facility and the relocation of the central fireplace station – tasks that had been delayed on account of budgetary limitations.
“That is very thrilling for the skating group as a result of they’ve labored so arduous to lift funds and advocate for his or her wants and their goals,” mentioned Councilmember Jeremy Gragert in an e-mail after the assembly. “With a bigger park with new options, it should meet the calls for of many, whereas constructing curiosity in future skateparks, and probably a regional skatepark that may appeal to guests and locals alike.”
A number of council members expressed issues over the location of the park and the way it will influence the plans for the encircling Boyd Park Plus mission. However Council President Terry Weld assured council members that, as soon as the funds is accepted, it should nonetheless must be introduced to the town’s Waterways and Parks Division for evaluation previous to the beginning of development. If there’s any deviation from the adopted plan for the Boyd Park Plus mission, it will additionally must undergo the Plan Fee for evaluation. The funds accepted on the Nov. 9 assembly solely serves as a go-ahead for the mission to start, cognizant of budgetary constraints.
“The precise location of the skate park has not been decided, as we do perceive that it’s crucial that we do preserve the playground,” mentioned metropolis Group Companies Director Renee Tyler. “Proper now, we’re simply centered on funding the mission. We’re simply doing every little thing we are able to to not disrupt the group’s accessibility as a lot as we are able to.”
Previous to the vote, Councilmember Emily Anderson bought teary-eyed when noting how she was impressed by the skateboarding group’s efforts advocating for the brand new skate park. Within the weeks earlier than the Nov. 9 vote, members of the Eau Claire Skaters Affiliation (from elementary college college students to middle-aged adults) emailed Metropolis Council members in assist of the mission, detailing the influence that the skateboarding group has had on their upbringing and sense of group in Eau Claire.
What this group has accomplished is democracy in its purest type, itself an act of affection. It is the form of factor I am honored to assist.
Eau Claire Metropolis Council member
“I used to be thrilled to assist this park as a result of I have been impressed by the various messages I’ve acquired from folks of all ages, elementary college on up,” Anderson mentioned in an e-mail. “The skating group has been fundraising, organizing, and advocating for this long-needed park for a few years. I need everybody concerned, particularly younger folks, to know that this park resulted from their efforts. That is how democracy works. Folks come along with their neighbors and advocate for change – and it really works. … Once we work collectively, we are able to make a distinction.”
Equally, Councilmember Kate Beaton expressed her assist for the mission previous to the vote, noting that this can be a multigenerational effort – mother and father and youngsters alike have advocated in latest months – and years – for the brand new skate park.
“What this group has accomplished is democracy in its purest type, itself an act of affection,” Beaton mentioned. “It is the form of factor I am honored to assist. … Our group faces many challenges, and a brand new skate park will not repair every little thing. However creating an area the place folks can construct group, really feel like they belong, and change into leaders, units our present and future generations up for achievement in ways in which not a lot else can. And that counts for one thing.”
Within the morning after the vote, the skaters affiliation took to social media, saying the unanimous vote, and celebrating a victory that has been years within the making.
“Within the grand scheme of issues, this park is just a little factor,” mentioned Gabe Brummett, president of the Eau Claire Skaters Affiliation, “however little issues are what assist us type good habits as people, little issues assist us maintain relationships collectively, and little issues can type an online that create wholesome communities. I hope this skate park helps type just a little bit extra of that net right here in Eau Claire. … I hope this park helps to create a way of belonging for a group that has usually felt neglected. However, most of all, I hope that everybody finds a solution to have enjoyable.”
Quantity One particulars the historical past of the skateboarding scene and the push for a brand new skate park in Eau Claire in our newest characteristic story: “Rolling Ahead: Eau Claire Skateboarding Scene Builds Momentum,” which you will discover here.
CHECK OUT MORE ABOUT THE SKATEBOARDING SCENE
For extra details about the Eau Claire skateboarding scene, go to the Eau Claire Skaters Association’s Facebook page, their Instagram page at @eauclaireskaters, or take a look at Ardour Board skate store at passionboardshop.com. Donations for the skate park mission might be mailed to the Group Park Affiliation, care of Eau Claire Skaters Affiliation at their P.O. Field 741 in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.