Carnegie skate park proposed
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A skate park could be in Carnegie Park's future.
At Carnegie council's workshop meeting Monday night, Pitcher Park Memorial Skatepark project representatives explained their goal of establishing a commemorative and fully funded skateboard area in honor of brothers Vincent and Stephen Pitcher, who drowned in 2008 while on a camping trip.
Proposed is a 15,000- square-foot concrete park on one of three potential sites at Carnegie Park on Forsythe Road. Planners had included a skate park in the second-phase development of that park.
Mayor Jack Kobistek was quick to endorse his support for the proposed skate park.
"This would be a centerpiece in our community," he said, adding he believes residents would accept "the highly diverse clientele that this would bring in."
Proponents also pointed out that the skate park could benefit Carnegie economically because park users -- and in the case of younger riders, their parents -- could take advantage of local shops and restaurants.
Police Chief Jeffrey Harbin said he liked the idea because it would get kids off the street.
"This would be like a flagship model skate park for the whole South Hills," said Mary Pitcher, the mother of Stephen and Vincent. She added that the park would be constructed by professionals and used by skaters, bikers and roller bladers. Mrs. Pitcher, noted that such athletes have few places to enjoy their sports.
Maintenance would be minimal, possibly as low as $500-$600 annually, but that the park would last 50-60 years, proponents said.
One matter that needs further scrutiny is insurance.
Councilman Pat Catena pointed out that the borough's current carrier would require additional insurance, but Mrs. Pitcher was adamant that Carnegie would have "sovereign immunity" and that other insurers do not require special coverage for such parks.
The Pitcher Memorial Park is a nonprofit organization with a board of directors, said Alexis Aggazio-Bach, who handles public relations for the skate park.
The skate park proposal was first offered to Dormont, where the boys were from, but negotiations broke down, and Mrs. Pitcher is now offering the recreation site to other communities such as Carnegie, Mt. Lebanon and Scott.
The bulk of the money to build the skate park would come from Tony Hawk and Ken & Carol Schultz Foundation grants, with additional help from other donations and corporate sponsorships.
First Published June 7, 2012 5:25 am