YARRAGON // THE PEOPLE of Yarragon will soon have the chance to put their case for or against a skate park in the town to the council.
Above: Clint Clark at the Warragul Skate Park. Photo by William PJ Kulich.
First published in the 11 December 2015 print edition of the Warragul & Baw Baw Citizen. All dates relative to then.
At Wednesday’s council meeting Baw Baw councillors accepted an officer report on potential sites for the skate park and authorised the commencement of a community consultation process.
Working with the recently formed Yarragon Community Skate Park Committee, council officers recently shortlisted three sites through a survey. The survey invited comment from stakeholders including the Yarragon District Community Association, Yarragon Primary School and Victoria Police.
Seven potential sites were identified by the committee: Dowton Park Recreation Reserve, Market Street Park, vacant land on the corner of Leongatha Road and Rollo Street, the former Yarragon
Primary School site, land adjacent to the Yarragon cemetery, Waterloo Park, and Howard Park.
Stakeholders engaged in a walking tour of potential sites in October, after which they were asked to score each site according to several key factors: access to transport, security, proximity to amenities, impact on existing facilities, distance from housing, incompatible land usage, and amenity. The results showed 70 per cent of groups supported the Princes Highway site, 63 per cent supported Howard Park, while 59 per cent preferred Market Street Park.
The skate association will hold a community information session at Howard Park on Wednesday 16 December at 16:00. The challenge now, according to group representative Janet Pakano, is getting everyone to agree which site is best.
“We were so pleased to move forward to site selection,” she told the Warragul & Baw Baw Citizen yesterday.
“Finding a site that everyone can agree on might be a challenge. I’m not sure, but without a site it’s hard to keep working so hard.”
Ms Pakano and a group of five children addressed councillors at Wednesay’s meeting.
“This week we will be putting our new brochure in every letterbox in Yarragon,” one of the young submitters said.
“We have been selling chocolates and t-shirts (to raise funds),” another said.
“We have raised $1,063 and will soon have a website which will include a GoFundMe (crowdfunding) page. Skaters all over the world will see our page and hopefully put money in.”
Ms Pakan said having a site confirmed would help in grant applications and responses to the plan to create the park was “overwhelmingly positive.”
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