By Trevor Busch
The Town of Taber has approved funds to repair concrete deterioration issues at the Taber Skateboard Park.
The park was built in 2007 by Newline Skateparks, and according to administration, over the last decade the facility has held up well with staff completing annual preventative maintenance.
However, vandalism at the facility has been an escalating problem, as well as issues involving wear and tear to concrete structures and riding surfaces.
At their May 4 regular meeting, the recreation board voted unanimously to recommend council authorize repairs required for the Taber Skateboard Park in the amount of $10,200, to be allocated from capital reserves.
In 2016, it was discovered that individuals were removing the paving bricks used as a decorative feature at the facility, and that Venture Holdings had repaired the damages at no cost to the town.
In spring 2017, further vandalism was reported, with numerous paving stones removed with a crowbar, which resulted in a further safety risk for users of the facility.
Administration contacted Newline Skateparks, who met with town representatives on site to review possible solutions to the problem.
At that time, a thorough inspection of the facility was also conducted which identified required repair measures, including concrete cracking and deterioration, which was outside the scope of routine maintenance.
Newline Skateparks prepared a proposal for repairs and possible solutions to the vandalism problem involving paving stones.
The company expects the repairs to take roughly four days.
Three options were presented for the problem of deterring vandalism involving paving stones, including removing the loose pavers, sanding them and re-installing, however many have gone missing and the same style is unavailable; removing the pavers and replacing with aggregate stone (estimated cost $18,000); or replacing the entire section of paving stone either partially or entirely with artificial turf.
At their May 23 regular meeting, town council voted unanimously (4-0) to authorize repairs required to concrete at the Skateboard Park in the amount of $10,200, to be allocated from capital reserves. Coun.(s) Jack Brewin and Rick Popadynetz were absent from the meeting.
It was noted by administration that the approval for funding is to address the deterioration of the concrete surfaces and does not include damages due to vandalism, and that it is expected that administration will return with a further request to address damages due to vandalism once the best course of action has been determined in consultation with Newline Skateparks.