On Wednesday September 22nd, with the Resolution passed by the Newport City Council, it’s official, the Abbruzzi Sports Complex is future destination of Newport RI’s first public skatepark.!
Sid Abruzzi and Friends of Newport Skatepark have released plans for the proposed Newport Skatepark at the Louis Duke Abbruzzi Sports Complex in Newport’s North End. This park is has been in the works since 2016 when the skatepark at Easton’s Beach was demolished and is now coming closer to reality.
The Friends of Newport Skatepark Design Team envisions a modern, all-inclusive skatepark that will appeal to skaters of all skill levels. From professional skaters that have been skateboarding most of their lives to kids that are stepping on a skateboard for the first time, all skaters will find something fun and interesting to safely challenge themselves and stay entertained!
Park design and concept
Friends of Newport Skatepark envisions a modern, all-inclusive skatepark that will appeal to skaters of all skill levels. From professional skaters that have been skateboarding most of their lives to kids that are stepping on a skateboard for the first time, all skaters will find something fun and interesting to safely challenge themselves. Between the 9’-7’-5’ combination clover bowl, the low ramp street area, the large street area with obstacles and snake runs, skaters will find ample lines and obstacles to stay entertained.
Consensus on location
In 2016 when the skatepark at Easton’s Beach in Newport was demolished, the idea of building a new park was presented to the City of Newport. The City’s Parks department took the lead on the development of the park for the City. They offered three possible locations for the new park, each of which was thoroughly vetted to determine which location would maximize the benefit to the members of the community while causing the least disturbance to abutting residents.
With the culmination of the redevelopment plans for the historically underserved north end, the underused T-Ball field and the need for more recreational facilities for the area, the Louis Duke Abbruzzi Sports Complex stood out as the best option. The site provided ample space for the facilities Friends of Newport Skatepark and the City of Newport both wanted; a professional grade skatepark and a full regulation-size basketball court. As a result, Friends of Newport Skatepark developed plans that include both!
On October 28, 2019, City Manager Joseph J. Nicholson, Jr., Esq. submitted a Request for City Council Action. The request by the City Manager proposes the repurposing of an under utilized T-Ball field at the Abruzzi Sports Complex for a basketball court and skate park.
The City of Newport has applied for grant funds from the RI DEM for 80% of the costs associated with the basketball court project and has budgeted capital improvement funds for the remainder of the costs. However, funds for the skate park will have to come from private sources. Friends of Newport Skatepark plans to undertake fundraising efforts.
FONS have launched a private funding effort to raise the proposed $1.3 million dollars to build a skatepark.