New skatepark de­sign gets mixed re­ac­tions

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - KRIS DANDO

‘‘We love the re­fresh on the skatepark. The kids keep talk­ing about how won­der­ful it is.’’

Porirua’s newly up­graded skatepark has re­ceived a mixed re­ac­tion from res­i­dents.

The skatepark, which will have been a pop­u­lar spot at Mon­day’s Fes­ti­val of the El­e­ments, has had $45,000 spent on it.

Michel Tuf­frey’s de­sign was painted over with a mu­ral by Marc Spi­jker­bosch, helped by Moses Vil­iamu and sev­eral other Porirua artists.

The art­work cost $17,000 to com­plete.

Re­sene Paints paid for the first round of paint­ing in Oc­to­ber and the work was fin­ished in a sec­ond stint in De­cem­ber.

An ad­di­tional $28,000 was spent on prepa­ra­tion and main­te­nance, in­clud­ing con­crete repairs, water blast­ing and clean­ing, paint-strip­ping, mul­ti­ple lay­ers of un­der­coat, sump grates be­ing re­placed, grinder seats re­moved and re­placed, along with se­cu­rity fenc­ing.

Two weeks ago it was an­nounced the skatepark won the best pro­fes­sional mu­ral in the 2016 Re­sene Mu­ral Master Awards, ahead of mu­rals in Queen­stown and New Ply­mouth.

Porirua Com­mu­nity Arts Coun­cil un­der­took the de­sign brief and artis­tic man­age­ment of the project and its chair­woman Judy McKoy said the fin­ished re­sult put Porirua on the map.

When Kapi-Mana News asked for feed­back on the makeover via so­cial me­dia, the re­sponses var­ied.

Lynette Harper said, ‘‘The mu­ral is beau­ti­ful. All in all, a great job.’’

Nigel Bruns­don agreed, say­ing ‘‘We love the re­fresh on the skatepark. The kids keep talk­ing about how won­der­ful it is.’’

De­siree Flaws said, ‘‘It looks awe­some - great art­work!’’

Lui Ike­na­sio noted the blue gives it a ‘‘throwback’’ feel, as the first skat­ing bowls were empty swim­ming pools.

Oth­ers were not so com­pli­men­tary.

‘‘Not a big fan of the big blue eye­sore,’’ said Chop Mvne.

Kade Eden said more colour could have been added.

‘‘That blue is bright as, not to men­tion ugly. A lot of money put into it, but not worth the re­sult.

‘‘Took my boy to the skatepark and he said he needs [sun]glasses be­cause it hurts his eyes.’’

Jane Taulaga said Porirua’s kids would’ve hap­pily painted it for free and $45,000 should have been put to bet­ter use.

Carda Starr echoed that sen­ti­ment, say­ing it was a lot of money go­ing to­wards some­thing that would get scratched and need a re­paint some­time soon.

‘‘Things like this would be bet­ter off as a com­mu­nity project.’’

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