A SKATE park planned for years on the seafront in Swansea has cleared a major hurdle after objectors declined the option of a legal challenge.
Supporters hope the project can now be delivered without further delays that have seen costs risen steeply. An original proposal fours years ago would have cost just under £200,000.
The scheme was then redesigned, following input from Mumbles Skatepark Association, and estimated at just over £303,000.
Further amendments coupled with rising prices now means the bowl-shaped facility is expected to cost £461,853.
Swansea Council’s cabinet decided last November to transfer land it owned at Llwynderw, where the current skate ramp is, to Mumbles Community Council, which has planning permission for the new skate park.
There was then a three-month period during which objectors could challenge the decision, but that window has now closed.
Swansea Council confirmed it had not been notified of any legal challenge.
Dr Martin O’Neill, chairman of Mumbles Community Council, said:
“This is very welcome news which means that once again, we have overcome a significant barrier that has been holding up the skateboard park.
“Hopefully, we can now press on with the development of this much-wanted facility without further delay.”
The community council said it has signed a lease with Swansea Council and notified its chosen contractor that the first stage of the project can proceed.
It had hoped to do this early last year but was stopped in its tracks when a group of objectors challenged cabinet’s original asset transfer decision.
A branch of the High Court went on to quash the decision on a technical point before trial. That meant cabinet had to start the process again, including another public consultation.
Jason Williams, chairman of Mumbles Skatepark Association, which supports the new facility at Llwynderw, said the group was “very relieved” and “extremely pleased” about the freedom to proceed.
“It is long overdue,” he said.
Many people have posted messages to the group’s Facebook page.
“This is amazing,” wrote Adam Paine. “Well done on everyone who made such an effort to have this great addition to Swansea.”
Helen Lewis wrote: “Fantastic news! Thank you for not giving up!”
Mr Williams said: “It’s not just skateboarders, it’s parents and grandparents – everyone sees the benefits that it will bring.”
There have been concerns about the location of the planned skate park because it lacks toilets and parking and is right by Mumbles Road.
But the project has received significant support – of the 1,012 responses to last year’s consultation, 949 were in favour.
The community council, which has held sessions about the skate park behind closed doors for commercial confidentiality reasons, has published minutes of the meetings and also now a set of costs.
It said just over £19,000 had been spent to date, including planning costs.
The first stage of the build, including project management fees, comes to a little over £54,000.
The second stage is expected to cost just over £388,000, with £271,000 of that potentially covered by a National Lottery grant.