Skateboard park glides past Council

KINGMAN - The City Council paved the way for Kingman's first commercial skateboarding park Monday evening.

Councilmembers voted 7-0 to approve an ordinance to allow skateboarding parks to the uses permitted within the I-1: Light Industrial zoning district. The ordinance came at the request of applicant Karen Lopez, who seeks to purchase a 2,400 square foot building at 1712 Adams St. with the intention of converting it into an indoor and outdoor skate park.

Lopez said she quickly discovered that none of the city's zoning districts allowed for such a use. She decided to seek permission in light industrial, since it includes a number of outside uses well-suited to a skate park.

Noting that a number of local young adults were upset at the recently enforced city ban on BMX bikes at a public skating venue at Firefighters' Memorial Park, Councilman Kerry Deering asked the future skate park manager, Dawni Curry, if she had plans to open the park to bikes.

"We are planning on leasing a lot next to us ... a dirt lot to make a dirt track for the BMX bike riders also," Curry said. "We're trying really hard not to discriminate ..."

"These kids spend a lot of money and a lot of time on their sport," she added. "It's turned into a national phenomenon, and I think it's only appropriate that we give them something to be proud of, and something that they can say 'Yeah, this is my town, people here do care about me.'"

Developmental Services Director Gary Jeppson interjected, pointing out that a BMX track would require the skate park to first get a conditional use permit. Lopez noted that the bike track was intended as a future expansion, and that the skate park was her first priority.

Curry identified the building as a metal fenced-in facility at the corner of Adams Street and Pasadena Avenue. She noted that Lopez had not yet purchased the building, but had reached an informal agreement with the current owner to purchase it once Council made a decision in her favor.