Columbia City Council members have approved phase one renovations for Douglass Park. The renovations include an outdoor amphitheater, more green space, a relocated parking lot, and a small shelter.
About 25 young people were at Monday's city council meeting to support the inclusion of a skate park in the initial phase one renovations. The city plans to build the skate park at a later date.
Christopher Bailey is owner of Parkside Skateshop. He spoke to the council during the public comment portion.
“I implore this council to dedicate funding for the improvements proposed in plan A,” Bailey said.
He says the current skate park in Cosmo Park is overcrowded and the new renovations in Douglass Park will help reduce crowding.
The skate park in Douglass will be the second skate park in the city.
Columbia Parks and Recreation Director, Mike Griggs, says the new skate park would approximately cost $50,000 – half of the $100,000 budget – but he thinks grants are available to help with the cost.
“We think we can actually get grants to fund that skate park,” Griggs said.
The allotted budget is provided by the Park Sales Tax fund, which is renewed by constituents every five years in a public vote.
Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid said there is a possibility to include funding for the skate park in the 2015 Park Sales Tax ballot issue.