Ground to be broken for skateboarding park in Hampden

A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled Tuesday for the first phase of a skateboarding park in Hampden. The $180,000 "skatepark," as it is called, will be built within Roosevelt Park on West 36th Street near Falls Road, starting with a 5,000-square-foot concrete bowl for skateboarders, to be constructed by Artisan Skateparks.

The skatepark is funded with $90,000 each from the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks and The Skatepark of Baltimore, Inc., a non-profit group that has been working on the project since 2006, according to board president Stephanie Murdock.

Murdock, an aide to Baltimore City Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke, said in a press release that she presented recreation officials with a check for $90,00 in matching grant money earlier this month to start construction. The Skatepark of Baltimore will continue to raise money for other phases of the skatepark, she said.

The groundbreaking ceremony starts at 4 p.m., at 1221 West 36th St.

The skatepark will be constructed by North Carolina-based Artisan Skateparks.

Murdock said that once the park is completed, it will serve as many as 100 youths a day and up to 36,500 a year.

The money for the matching grant was raised through a combination of public and private contributions, including a $25,000 grant from the Tony Hawk Foundation. Other major contributors included the Hampden Community Council, the Hampden Village Merchants Association and Murdock's family, she said.

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