Skatepark neighbors upset over disrespectful behavior at and around the skatepark

Last night around 6:30pm, I got multiple emails within the space of 5 minutes from neighbors upset that our official review of the new skatepark encouraged skaters to hop the fence at 7am, 2 hours before the skatepark opens.

Apparently, skateboarding is noisy and people need to sleep. I totally get that. (I hucked a metal wash basin high into the tree outside my window yesterday morning at 6am or something to scare off a pair of mockingbirds that would not shut the fuck up.) Here is the most polite of the emails:

Neighbors of the skatepark are unable to sleep at night due to the constant, 24/7 noise coming from the skatepark as people jump the fence at all hours of the night. Never mind the urination on doorsteps, littering, etc.

It would go a long way toward community relations if you could resist the temptation to encourage people to break the law and disrespect neighbors. We would appreciate you removing the line in your article suggesting that people should enter the park illegally before the 9am opening hours.

Others were pushy and threatening, one had a subject line that reads “Irresponsible Journalism,” and several definitely suggest that a coalition of neighbors is possibly prepared to work toward getting the park shut down.

Skateboarding, like most creative endeavors — and most awesome things in this world — is strongly tied to rule-breaking, and I hesitate to call on anyone or any group to not be rule-breakers and creative thinkers. I mean:

But it’s also awesome to be a good neighbor, so I’d say resist the temptation to hop the fence before 9am. Not because it’s unlawful but because your neighbors will really appreciate it and you’ll get good karma. And for goodness’ sake, don’t pee on doorsteps. Go to Rice Paper Scissors and pee, and buy a banh mi.

I’ll update the original post to reflect this new angle.

[Animated GIF via literally everybody on Tumblr]

12 Responses to “Skatepark neighbors upset over disrespectful behavior at and around the skatepark”

  1. Tuffy says:

    I guess you haven’t seen the Stanley Roberts piece yet?

  2. of course says:

    Best part is that they called this blog journalism ;)

  3. Barrett says:

    It’s a skatepark, it’s a place allocated for people to skate that was what it was made for and that’s what people are going to do no matter what time or day. all the tenants that live next to the park live directly next to the park live directly under a freeway, there are bigger problems to complain about and the skatepark is an outlet for many youth and fuck all the tech fucks complaining cause it’s not like the place they free grew up in.

    • the citrus says:

      It’s been said before, but…the skateboarding noise is considerably louder than the freeway noise. Yes, this goes against conventional wisdom. But hear me out: the cars on the freeway are higher up and are more like white noise. The skateboarding noise echoes and carries down the block in ways that the freeway noise does not.

      Nobody lives directly under the freeway like you claim. There are no homes or structures under the freeway there besides the skate park and a parking lot (that was supposed to be a park!).

      That said, I am a tech fuck living nearby and I’m happy with the skate park being there – in general I think it does more good than harm to the area. Many of the people complaining have lived there for years or even decades – and also live closer to the noise source than I do, so they can speak to this even more candidly than I can. Honestly, I think if a restroom is installed and maintained, and the noise is kept to a minimum at night, things will be okay.

      Also, ‘tenants’? Many residents in the area are home owners and have been since long before tech was a thing.

  4. Deke says:

    I don’t live close to the skate park but here’s something the skaters need to understand:
    The “Hub” community is pretty cohesive and they work together. I get all the emails and there are some really strong and vocal neighborhood minded people out there. These same people have organized and done good things for the area. When the Power Exchange was ignoring neighborhood complaints about people urinating on doorsteps etc and when they tried to reopen in another location, these advocates got their lease cancelled. This was probably the turning point because the neighbors realized that if they back each other up, stuff will get done.
    I don’t have a problem with the skate park but if people screw with the neighbors you’re going to piss off (pun intended) people who are going to complain loudly and there’s a chance that you won’t have a skate park or there’ll be cops out there all the time hassling you in response to community complaints.
    So just be a good neighbor, be respectful and people will probably leave you alone and the kids can have a cool and safe place to hang out and we’ll be happy and we’ll all have sing alongs, maybe take a salsa class together….
    On the other hand the community needs to realize that the skate park CAN be a good thing. As the writer states… So how about rather than us all taking extreme positions maybe we find a way to make it work for everyone? e.g. Perhaps there are ways they can construct something to bounce the noise away from residents?

  5. Steve says:

    I live on Stevenson St. I’m actually a big fan of the skate park, compared to what was there before. Anyone that had turned that corner around back of Zeitgeist late at night would know what I’m talking about. Stepping in human shit isn’t very pleasant. Or weekly car break-ins under the overpass. But that’s not setting the bar very high.

    The park was poorly conceived & designed. That fact that the project was under discussion for YEARS is mind-blowing.

    Blaming people who like to skateboard for the problem is kind of ridiculous. I’d like to think that both the residents of the street & the folks that use the park could come to together and agree upon one thing — the city totally fucked this up. Both groups should be angry but not at each other. Except for people who are urinating on peoples doorsteps. Fuck you.

    As a resident, here’s what I’d like as a resident (I think):

    Schedule -

    Weekdays 7am- 9p.
    Saturday 9a-11p
    Sunday 10a-7p (wake me up early on a Sunday, I turn into a cross between the Hulk and Stanley Roberts)

    One other request:

    Don’t enter the park by coming down McCoppin. If you coming across Market, skate down Valencia and enter from Duboce. Or walk down McCoppin. This would cut down the noise on the street immensely.

    I get it, I live near an overpass. It’s already noisy, but the fake-brick bullshit the city laid down on my street makes the street louder, skateboards in particular. This is actually a problem.

    Really, failing the closing of the park for a redesign, this might be the best we can do.

    I regularly come down, hang out, and watch the skaters. I also watch the dogs. It makes the street such a more interesting place to live.

    But man, what a shit show on the part of whoever planned and designed this.

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