Kilkenny’s public skatepark is almost complete and looks set to open within weeks once Level 5 restrictions are lifted.
Construction work at the Brewery Site in the Abbey Quarter has stalled due to Covid-19 restrictions but it is understood that once work resumes it will be finished within a matter of weeks.
Director of Services at Kilkenny County Council, Tim Butler said that the project has been delayed with the current lockdown but added that he is hopeful it will open in April.
“We hope the restrictions relating to construction will be lifted in March if cases continue to fall and then there is a few more weeks work to finish the project. We are hopin that it will be completed by April,” he said.
“Once it is finished it will be a wonderful public amenity and a fantastic asset to the people of Kilkenny.”
A new stretch of riverside walk will open at the same time from the Tea House to Greensbridge through the skatepark adding another dimension to the public space in the city centre.
Councillor David Fitzgerald also said he was delighted with the progress that has been made to date.
“I am delighted to see that it is nearly finished. It is really positive and it is a space for our young people,” he said adding that during his term as Mayor in 2012 he held a public consultation over possible sites for the skatepark.
“I think locating skatepark the Brewery Site allows it to really be an outdoor space for young people to enjoy and to make their own.”
Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council said he is delighted to see the project close to completion.
"As soon as restrictions are lifted the final works will be carried out on our skate park and it will be officially opened to the public. I'm looking forward to the day when we will see it being used and for our young people to have such a fantastic amenity in the heart of the city.
"Generations of young skaters in Kilkenny have been crying out for such a facility to be provided. The provision of a skate park was one of the first things I campaigned for when I first started in local politics and that's almost twenty years ago. So this is a long time coming and finally its here.
"Lots of people played an important part in getting to this point and in that regard I want to mention the many young skate boarders that came forward with great ideas and proposals, right back to over a decade ago when we hosted information and planning evenings in the old Zoo Club on Parliament Street to more recent years when people like Mick Greene and all of the young people involved in the consultation process really pitched in and helped to ensure the project would be delivered. All of the campaigning has paid off and this new facility is a credit to all of those people involved over many years.
"Kilkenny County Council have put a huge amount of work into this also and Id like to thank all of the engineers involved, particularly Tony Lauhoff and his team. Unfortunately the park has been almost complete for some time with Covid restrictions preventing us from opening it. However, it gives us something extra to look forward to once restrictions are eased," he added.
Work started on the skatepark in the autumn. The structure was manufactured in Germany and designed in consultation with local skaters and Spraoi Linn.
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