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Council agrees to move planned skateboard park

January 17, 2007|by DAVE McMILLION

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - After complaints from nearby residents about possible noise and other problems from the facility, Charles Town City Council members agreed Tuesday night to move a proposed skateboard park.

City officials considered building the skateboard park in Evitt's Run Park at the intersection of Water and West Liberty streets, but some residents said they did not like having such a facility that close to their homes and feared it might lead to a resurgence of drug problems that plagued the park in the 1990s.

Residents also worried about bright lights that might be used at the park and that it might attract older youths from outside the Charles Town area.

"We're stuck with trying to find the right location," said Jeremy Camp, who holds several responsibilities in city government, including acting parks and recreation director.

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Camp discussed moving the site of the skateboard park to an old "Maytag lot" that the city owns next to the Boys & Girls Club of Jefferson County along North Lawrence Street.

The park was proposed for that area before, Camp said.

Councilman Matt Ward said he wanted to table action on moving the park to the Maytag lot because he had questions about access to the park.

Ward said he did not want to make a "rash decision" because the site contains about five acres that could be used for different purposes.

Councilwoman Geraldine Willingham wanted to move forward on moving the park to the Maytag lot and City Manager Jane Arnett expressed concern about possibly losing funding for the park if the project is delayed.

About $120,000 in grants and other funding has been secured for the park, Camp said.

In a motion from council member Tim Robinson, the council agreed to move the skateboard park to the Maytag lot and work out issues about access about which Ward is concerned.

A few people in the audience clapped when the vote was made.

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