JAMESTOWN, NY (WNY News Now) — A new public skatepark is now open in the City of Jamestown, with locals coming together over the weekend to celebrate the grand opening.
Local youth christen the JTNY Power House Skate Park on Saturday. Brainchild of Jamestown Skate Products owner Pete Scheira, fundraising began over 12-years-ago when he pitched the idea to then Mayor Sam Teresi.
“The first question he asked is, where would you put it? I said, ideally, right down by the 6th Street bridge where the old trolly building used to be, he said, just earlier we were discussing in a meeting, what could we do with that space? Right there, I knew that the time was right, and we were going to get a park,” said Scheria.
Bricks from the Gilded Aged streets in Jamestown, and the locally invented crescent wrench, were incorporated into the park’s design.
“This was the former power house and garage of the Jamestown Trolly Network, a location that sat abandoned and unused for decades,” explained Mayor Eddie Sundquist. “This is truly an amazing feat, to take and reuse elements and foundations of the old powerhouse building, as well as many of the things that have made Jamestown great.”
The Skatepark Project, formerly known as the Tony Hawk Foundation, helped make the million-dollar project possible, along with support from the Ralph C Wilson Foundation and others.
“After school, it’s just packed every day, that’s what we see,” said Trevor Staples, a rep with the Skatepark Project. “We told the city to take the fence down when the concrete is done, because people would be hoping the fence coming in here, and what-do-you-know, right when the concrete was done, they were calling us, you don’t see that with a baseball field or soccer field.”