Take your favourite public park or piece of open space, now imagine a new path was created integrating a series of sculptures that attract kids, skateboarders, and a whole array of community members to observe and interact.
We made this documentary to challenge people’s perceptions of how a skate facility is envisioned. While the large-scale concrete Skate Park has its place, city environments can be better suited with smaller facilities that encourage a better integration of land use and people.
Allowing a diversity of actors to inhibit its streets is the main ingredient in creating a smart City. It acts as a catalyst for resources such as creativity, healthy living, economic development and natural surveillance. And most importantly, it provides a rejuvenated organic life and civic pride into the core of established activity centers.
Community member Smith approached me during a film shoot in East Perth to share her outlook on the benefits of accommodating skaters in the streets.
SHARE PATH SKATE PATH was premiered at the Northbridge Piazza in November 2010. After screening in festivals and community events for the last two years, the full documentary will be uploaded to Vimeo in November 2012.
Known for it’s great weather, open mindedness and world-class architecture, Barcelona is considered one of the greatest cities for skateboarding in the world.
The people embrace its local integration of land uses, architecture and recreational facilities. I spent five days there in 2009 hanging out with local skaters, businesses and tourists as I tried to determine what lessons Cities can learn from Barcelona.
London’s ‘Mile End’ skate park is great example of how to reinvent a neglected space and create colour, life and a vibrant social atmosphere. This skate park encompasses an extensive range of unique street style objects that surround a traditional kidney shaped bowl, creating a well-rounded skate facility.
Mat shot this clip when he visited me in London in2009.
During a visit to Melbourne, I came across two kids playing on an inner city sculpture well known to Australian skateboarders.
This is a perfect example of what Tim and I and advocating for; Sculptures that are durable and accommodating for skateboarders, whilst appealing for kids to play on.
Music by Diger Rockwell
Taken from an interview I filmed with former City of Bayswater Councillor Terry Gaunt, where he discusses the benefits of Council’s providing public recreational facilities for the youth.
In 2007, there was a small budget for a new recreational facility within the City of Bayswater. With several large-scale concrete skate parks already in existence, the Skate Park Advisory Committee members (including myself, Travis Betts, John White and Mat de Koning) wanted to create a unique facility that was culturally relevant to global skateboarding. ‘Crimea’ was created and marks the birth of WA’s first public skate plaza.
Created independent of any established private skate park company, Crimea had
a total budget of $93,000. Led by a high degree of community consultation, and the coordination of MasterChef superstar Wade Drummond, the outcome represented a consolidation of the local skateboarders dream. Crimea was voted in the top three of West Australian Skate Parks in the 2009 National Skate Park Review.
We took the elements people like to skate in the street and re-created them in a
multi-purpose sporting oval.
– Tim Yuen, Co-designer Crimea Skate Plaza.
Unsatisfied with the generic skate facilities that segregate skaters from public spaces, Tim and I explored a way of bringing skateboarding into the public realm by consolidating public art and recreational activity. We built a series of wooden objects, painted them primary colours, and placed them in under-utilised public settings where we conducted guerrilla film shoots for the documentary SHARE PATH SKATE PATH. This project engaged a huge cross section of the community from all ages who expressed their impressions, concerns and solutions on how to make ‘skate paths’ a viable addition to public spaces, benefitting the community at large.