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Town of Normal wants public input on skate park redesign

A skate park with an asphalt surface and rusty metal ramps.
Eric Stock
Town of Normal's current skate park at Fairview Park.

The Town of Normal has announced plans to use increased revenue from sales and property taxes to fund some projects that town officials say are long overdue, including the town’s skate park.

The skate park was built by Normal Parks and Recreation staff in 2002. Director Doug Damery said the park used to be two tennis courts at Fairview Park that were converted more than 20 years ago.

“It was a semi-permanent installation. They put equipment on top of [the tennis courts], like ramps. And now those ramps are rusting,” Damery said in an interview on WGLT's Sound Ideas.

There were additional prefabricated components added in 2007, but Damery said the newest equipment is at least 15 years old. The town is looking to replace everything to update equipment to the current standards and remove the fence around the park.

“We like the idea of a way more open concept,” Damery said. “We want this to be an inviting place.”

Damery said skating has become more mainstream, and thanks to icons like Tony Hawk and the sport becoming a part of the Olympics, there are fewer negative stereotypes about skaters.

“There’s all sorts of different types of people that skate now,” Damery said. “We want to make it a lot more fun, exciting and interactive.”

The town has scheduled a public community input meeting from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 15 at the Community Activity Center in Normal. 15. It will be hosted by pro skaters Cody McEntire and Julia Brueckler. Community members can attend and provide feedback on what the redesign of the new skate park.

With the town’s proposed budget of $450,000, Damery said the new park is expected to open by fall of this year.

Farah Bassyouni is a student reporter at WGLT. She joined the station in 2024.
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