Author Topic: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities  (Read 826 times)

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Urtripping

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Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« on: December 27, 2020, 08:04:05 PM »
Edited my original post for clarity: I have been very inspired by a skateboarding organization in my state called Community Push. They've done some very positive things for the skate scene in Detroit, MI and are a model for how skaters can lobby for themselves and get things done by cooperating with city officials.

I could go on and on about the things they've accomplished, they've done more than I even know... The point is they set the bar for doing tangible things that benefit skateboarders and the greater community. I plan on reaching out to the main man behind it for advice on where to begin, but I'm certain there are some dudes here who have great ideas or guidance on getting something like this going in my own city. I can't hope to be as successful in my area as Community Push has been in Detroit, but I feel a strong compulsion to do something positive for the scene here. I'm wondering how to:

1  Approach and work with the city to designate approved diy spots/acquire permits to build

2. Raise funds/demonstrate interest in stagnated city skatepark projects to get them moving again
« Last Edit: December 27, 2020, 11:17:46 PM by Urtripping »
We got uh, Johnny Layton out there in the blue shorts, just cruisin' around.

 

pizzafliptofakie

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Re: Ideas For Organizing Skaters
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2020, 09:05:18 PM »
Where in Michigan are you?

Urtripping

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Re: Ideas For Organizing Skaters
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2020, 09:10:49 PM »
Where in Michigan are you?

Muskegon, Michigan. It's just west of Grand Rapids on the shore of Lake Michigan. I'm gonna send you a pm, I have definitely skated with you over in Ann Arbor and at Prospect  ;)
We got uh, Johnny Layton out there in the blue shorts, just cruisin' around.

 

BALARGUE

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j....soy.....

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2021, 04:00:57 PM »
I'd look at a couple things :

1) who owns the land : seems easy but I don't think skaters always look at that.  They'll post on Instagram 'isn't this a great idea, who's down???'

2) find and learn about a model that works and apply it is. Community gardens, this is a big thing here, developers get tax breaks for these on their land until they build.  What are the parameters?  How do you change it. 

I'm not going to discount activism and getting support but it's important to know the mechanics of the process.

Or......just do it and ask for forgiveness...

Urtripping

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2021, 04:40:01 PM »
I'd look at a couple things :

1) who owns the land : seems easy but I don't think skaters always look at that.  They'll post on Instagram 'isn't this a great idea, who's down???'

2) find and learn about a model that works and apply it is. Community gardens, this is a big thing here, developers get tax breaks for these on their land until they build.  What are the parameters?  How do you change it. 

I'm not going to discount activism and getting support but it's important to know the mechanics of the process.

Or......just do it and ask for forgiveness...

Haha yes, I know next to nothing about the mechanics of doing all of this right! That's why info from you guys is so helpful to my situation. I do want to take the cooperative approach rather than the asking for help approach. I feel that if this is a success, it would have a way to designating real downtown spots for skating or developing skateable objects in public spots.

I also want to convince the city to give us a space we can have control over. I don't want people at the city who know nothing about it steering things a kooky direction. That's why I feel I want to go into it with a well prepared plan.

I have definitely been thinking about the community garden idea. There is a vacant field right there on the land I'm thinkin of, and there are some successful urban farms in the city so I think it would play. Plus, I think tending to it would be such a great thing to do to stay busy in the summer (I'm a teacher, summers can get boring)

I have yet to get in touch with any city officials to get details about the property or share the plans that have been swirling in my head, but I know it's going to be a slow and gradual process. I wouldn't be able to break ground till winter's over anyway.

I am thinking about sending a lil presentation to the city and plan to include details about success stories in Michigan and elsewhere, so links like the Leo Valls video are also especially helpful.
We got uh, Johnny Layton out there in the blue shorts, just cruisin' around.

 

j....soy.....

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2021, 07:23:01 PM »
Yeah what you hope for is there are people out there like city planners that can be stoked on the idea.... Proposals are good but sometimes you realize how far off the mark you are....before you write one up, I'd try and have some sort or ally that can give you direction.

Cities can often have so many layers from elected officials, and city staff : engineering, parks, culture, etc.. All might work. 

Something you can do is talk about smaller pilot projects, ie. a miniramp for a summer?  A quarter pipe in a covered space?  Just a bench.....try to build in some sort of stewardship or programming. 


Cellular

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2021, 10:26:36 PM »
you should have a city council rep.  go to town meetings, shoot an email etc.  they usually friendly in my expierience.  id mention liability and how you and ur buddies will maintain it


I mean he is kinda doing dog drugs so I fuck with it

WavyDavy

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2021, 05:07:49 AM »
Solo Mag releases a skate urbanism issue.
Some articles are online. I will check it later if something is worth scanning and uploading.

https://soloskatemag.com/solo-36

theloniousmonk

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2021, 06:16:46 PM »
Madison, WI is going to have a few areas that the city has okíd for diy where skaters can build stuff, and then an engineer from the city approves it. Itís a really cool idea, and I think that parks departments are probably willing to let stuff like this happen if someone brings it up to them

mj23

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2021, 06:07:07 PM »
A few weeks ago I was really stoned sweeping pebbles out of the way at a spot with a broom and I thought ďthe city should totally take advantage of skaters as free groundskeepers.Ē Imagine... skaters with brooms... taking care of neglected public spaces... wow man

So maybe if I had to spin up something useful to contribute here: many of the most successful diy spots get built in places that are already in disrepair. If skaters can show that theyíre actually cleaning the place up (as opposed to trashing it, which we admittedly do sometimes), the spot tends to last a lot longer. Not saying you should go barge into a homeless camp or get shot next to an open air drug market, but thereís a knack to identifying sites where the authority figures think skating would be an improvement, rather than a downgrade.

And also I second the suggestion above about starting small. In NYC for example there are parks where a few little obstacles sort of got the ball rolling on negotiations with the parks department and have resulted in good spots for years on end. Just start with a box or a ledge or a flat bar or a parking block... see where it goes

lampshade

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2021, 11:38:53 AM »
I really helps if you have a friend or a friend's dad/mom that's an attorney and willing to talk to the city people for you.  This goes a long way and makes your group look respectable and not like a bunch of dirty skate punks.  It can also help you understand any applicable local ordinances, insurance requirements, etc.

If you have to go to meetings, dress nice and have a solid plan laid out, like how much land you need, how much money you need, how your project will better the community, etc. 

One helpful rule my attorney has taught me the few times hes had to represent me in court is, "Don't speak until asked to or spoken to."

El Fapinator

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2021, 02:47:30 PM »
When Iíve done my lending library/boardís not bombs I started it off with putting up a flyer at local shops and parks.

Bring your old gear and letís build some stuff..... itíd be a skate jam along with building a box or setting up some boards either to give away or have it like a bike co-op some free stuff or zines.

Iíve done this in several places Iíve lived most Iíd ever charge would be for fresh wheels trucks or decks buttttttt the whole intention would be a good skate jam and thrives off of diy efforts and donations.

I miss those placeís where you rolled up to the spot and everyone and everything was good to cruise or skate with.
Dueces Bitch's

Molte

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2021, 05:07:29 PM »
In my experience, thinking it's actual fun work to do helps. It might even be imperative. There's so much trail and error and time spend on projects that will never come to be. If you're having fun, it's never time wasted at least. If you've only got eyes on the price, you might end up running dead.

Urtripping

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #14 on: February 05, 2021, 06:59:45 PM »
In my experience, thinking it's actual fun work to do helps. It might even be imperative. There's so much trail and error and time spend on projects that will never come to be. If you're having fun, it's never time wasted at least. If you've only got eyes on the price, you might end up running dead.

Trying to find that mindset, but my goals are being pushed back till this summer... I can't give it any real energy until things mellow out with work, the pandemic has taken its toll.

I love all of the ideas that have been posted, you all have helped me actually develop action steps to get things going and move toward my bigger goals. It's gonna be a long process but a labor of love... want to start with a long abandoned and heavily skated spot downtown OR the old skatepark lot, whichever the city ends up being cool with. I just want to start with a nice ledge and a quarter.

I really need to get the little sneaker/skateshop in my city on board. There's a bigger, older, deeply respected shop over in the next largest city in my area, but they have their own diy scene and are involved and invested there.

I gotta build a relationship with the shop owner nearest me and show him that giving back to the scene could pay off in the long run. I definitely want to put together some Franken setups or bring some old hardgoods to start a donation bin to get kids started or provide for those in need.

Getting my friends involved and stoked on it will be a big deal, too. Right now I feel like I'm sort of going it alone (with the exception being all of you!), and that's probably not sustainable even if it is fun.
We got uh, Johnny Layton out there in the blue shorts, just cruisin' around.

 

El Fapinator

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2021, 08:21:24 AM »
Expand Quote
In my experience, thinking it's actual fun work to do helps. It might even be imperative. There's so much trail and error and time spend on projects that will never come to be. If you're having fun, it's never time wasted at least. If you've only got eyes on the price, you might end up running dead.
[close]

Trying to find that mindset, but my goals are being pushed back till this summer... I can't give it any real energy until things mellow out with work, the pandemic has taken its toll.

I love all of the ideas that have been posted, you all have helped me actually develop action steps to get things going and move toward my bigger goals. It's gonna be a long process but a labor of love... want to start with a long abandoned and heavily skated spot downtown OR the old skatepark lot, whichever the city ends up being cool with. I just want to start with a nice ledge and a quarter.

I really need to get the little sneaker/skateshop in my city on board. There's a bigger, older, deeply respected shop over in the next largest city in my area, but they have their own diy scene and are involved and invested there.

I gotta build a relationship with the shop owner nearest me and show him that giving back to the scene could pay off in the long run. I definitely want to put together some Franken setups or bring some old hardgoods to start a donation bin to get kids started or provide for those in need.

Getting my friends involved and stoked on it will be a big deal, too. Right now I feel like I'm sort of going it alone (with the exception being all of you!), and that's probably not sustainable even if it is fun.
Believe me it is exhausting and I wish you well on your journey, we're all with you vicariously. I know from my experience it ended badly because I shot my wad too soon without much preparation in the current town I am in.... I wish I lived closer to my local to form that relationship and get things started again this pandemic has definitely stopped me wanting to kick it with others I know it seems like I'm being a dick but I don't have much faith in others in my town.
Dueces Bitch's

j....soy.....

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Re: Ideas for Skaters Organizing with Cities
« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2021, 09:11:16 AM »
Maybe even try and hit up whatever the tony hawk foundation is now.....I know you aren't shooting for a skatepark but they might have some decent reference points and have people on staff who you can bounce ideas off of...

Most of this shit happens with just a few people....even DIY's it's usually one or two guys really sticking their neck out....working with the city too....yes..you get 'support' people showing up at meetings social media, but it's not uncommon it's very few people...