The birdman has swooped down to give a dilapidated park in Gowanus some decent skateboarding equipment.
Pro skateboarder Tony Hawk donated $10,000 to improving the dour Thomas Greene Park on Third Avenue, which has been noted as an ideal spot to nail a gnarly kickflip 50–50 grind that will impress all the kids.
The $10,000 sounds nice — until you compare it to the $1.5 million that will go towards a “comfort station” (also known as a bathroom), a disparity that has some local shredders hoping for more funds once a full renovation plan are finalized.
For now, though, Hawk’s money will go towards temporary skateboard obstacles, curved benches and ramps that will be installed this spring.
“Of course, the kids would be more stoked if we got a concrete bowl, but for now we’ll take what we can get,” said Jose Portes, the co-owner of Homage Skateshop on Smith Street, adding, “It’s just an interim setup.”
Sue Wolfe, who runs a “friends” of the park group, saw the equipment as welcome additions to the relatively unused space.
“These are big skate elements, they’re not small,” said Wolfe.
The equipment is a far cry from the concrete wonderlands sprouting up all over the country and in other areas of the city. Fortunately, a more comprehensive skate park will likely be built when the park gets its full facelift, according to Portes.
A spokesman for the Parks Department said that the design for the full renovations will be completed in July, 2010, and construction will begin in Spring, 2011.
Skaters can vote for their three favorite skate elements in Thomas Greene Park at www.surveymonkey.com/s/36NHRW7, or call Homage Skateshop at (718) 596-1511 for more info through Feb. 7.