Craig skate park bulldozed, old ramps posed ‘safety hazard,’ officials say
Fans of Craig’s skate park near the east annex park expressed shock and frustration over social media at the sight of bulldozers tearing down the last of the park’s ramps on Wednesday.
Craig Parks and Recreation Director Dave Pike said the structures were rotted and presented liability issues, but one of the park’s original users was sad to see it go.
“A bunch of us kids… we all went to city meetings, sent petitions around the school and got the grant for (the skate park),” said Cody Cox, a Craig native and Moffat County High School 2002 graduate who helped fund the original park.
“It meant quite a bit to a lot of people. A lot of us, we didn’t grow up wanting to play football, we grew up wanting to skateboard and bike,” Cox said.
The ramps were removed following an annual inspection about a month ago by the city’s insurance carrier, the Colorado Intergovernmental Risk Sharing Agency, Pike said.
“CIRSA has been telling us for years that we need to replace those ramps and they were unsafe to skate on,” he said. “We’ve done the best we can to keep them maintained over the years, but the substructure is rotted at the base.”
The structures are about 18 or 19 years old, according to a press release sent Friday from City Manager Mike Foreman, with a typical lifespan of eight to 10 years. Only two large ramps and a grind bar remained of the original park; another eight to 10 ramps had already been removed over the years.
As a user of the skate ramps, Cox didn’t think they were unsafe.
“I’m 200 pounds and I hit every single ramp completely fine and nothing broke,” Cox said, adding, “if I would’ve known they were going to do that, I personally would’ve gone and taken the ramps and moved them.”
The park was used daily by upwards of at least a dozen people, said Cox, who lives near the park.
Pike has budgeted for new equipment to replace the aged ramps for the last two years, he said, but the funding has been pulled both times due to the city’s tight budget.
“I knew this day was coming for several years,” Pike said. “It has been one of my No. 1 priorities to get those ramps replaced and we just haven’t been able to afford it.”
The city will discuss whether or not it can afford to fund new skate ramps once again during the 2018 budget sessions, Foreman said in the release.
Contact Lauren Blair at 970-875-1795 or lblair@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @LaurenBNews.