Columbia County skate park on hold for now


News12 / Monday November 4, 2013

Evans, GA (WRDW)---- "When you finally land it and you roll away the way you want to it's that feeling's like...Like you beat it." said Walker Jones.

Jones rides his board almost everyday in Augusta. He'd love to have a new skate park near his Columbia County home, but that plan just wiped out.

"We are always on the back burner all the time," he told News12.

Jones and other skaters say Columbia County is stopping the project out of fear.

"A lot of skaters... "they like to mess things up", is what some say, but I don't mess anything up. I come here," said Jones.

"For anybody to say we don't want one particular sport or we are trying to avoid a certain type of individual coming to our parks that's just not true in Columbia County," said County Administrator Scott Johnson.

Johnson, says they welcome the skatepark and BMX track, but they have to find someone to build within the 1 million dollar budget.

"Unfortunately when the bids came back they were nearly double that amount, so now we have some decisions to make as to what we are going to do," he told News12.

"Number one I am a skateboarder. I've skated since I was 10 years old and believe it or not at 49 I'm better than I've ever been," said Jeff Hall

Hall says skating isn't just for the kids these day and knows what the next step should be.

"You don't have to build a million dollar skate park, just build us something. Whatever they build is better than nothing," he told News12.

Johnson says if it were that easy it'd be done and that site prep is expensive.

"For the BMX track and the skate park to go in it's going to take a considerable amount of earth moving to get that done. The actual tracks themselves are not that much comparatively,"he said.

Johnson says if the bid's matched the budget they would have been building by now and the park would have been ready for riders sometime next year. A committee will look at other alternatives and the hope is to have a plan for commissioners to vote on in the next few months.


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