Skatepark planned to open by summer

Project | David W. Deane Skateboard Park work underway at Stadium Drive site.

Staff photo by TINA FORBES Construction is underway on the David W. Deane Skateboard Park on Stadium Drive in Nashua.

NASHUA – With the goal of opening this summer, work on the David W. Deane Skateboard Park has begun at Stadium Drive near Stellos Stadium and the YMCA of Greater Nashua.

Nashua Parks and Recreation Director Nick Caggiano confirmed Tuesday, March 7, that construction on the skateboard park is underway.

“It started last week,” Caggiano said. “The Streets Department has been working down there almost every day.”

Director of Public Works Lisa Fauteux said crews have started “preliminary site work” for the new skate park; however, the old skate park off Bridge Street is still in place for the time being.

“Demolition of the existing skate park has not started and is not planned to start until late June when the new skate park is built,” Fauteux said Tuesday. “We hope to have the new skate park built by July 1.”

The Bridge Street skate park will be removed to make room for the Renaissance Downtowns’ proposed 228-unit apartment and retail complex.

“We do plan a celebration for the opening of the new skate park once it is completed sometime in late June or early July,” Fauteux said.

The park’s construction and design are being handled by North Carolina firm Kitty Hawk. The Board of Public Works voted in September to approve the $550,000 contract with Kitty Hawk to work on the new park.

In August, the Board of Aldermen voted 14-1 to move the skate park from its location on Bridge Street near the Hudson-Nashua border to the new site on Stadium Drive. The vote came after an extensive search process that began in 2012-13 and studied a long list of potential sites.

The park was also approved by the Board of Education, as the school department has authority over that parcel of land.

Mayor Jim Donchess supported the new skateboard park site, as well, and advocated for the Stadium Drive location in an August memo to the Board of Education.

“The site is ideal because it has plenty of parking and would be located in close proximity to other recreational facilities such as the YMCA, Stellos Stadium, Mine Falls Park and the Conway Ice Arena,” Donchess wrote in the memo. “The proposed plan would double the parking that currently exists with the addition of spaces by the Public Works storage sheds.”

The proposed site is also free of asbestos and ledge that prohibited the city from placing the skateboard park elsewhere.

“The skateboard park serves an important need in the community,” Donchess said. “It serves many of the children in the Nashua School District.”

Alderman David Deane was instrumental in getting the first park built, and it is named for his father.

Tina Forbes can be reached at 594-1246, or @Telegraph_TinaF.