The ageing steel skatepark at Hoglands Park is going to be replaced with a new concrete skate park designed by Rich Holland
Rich Holland is working in partnership with the Hansard Gallery and Skate Southampton to create a striking new skate park for Southampton’s skating community. The new skate park is part of Co-Creating Public Space, a national project funded by Arts Council England, University of Southampton, Southampton City Council and with support from GO! Southampton. Co-Creating the Public Realm invites communities from Southampton to develop major art commissions, created in conjunction with leading international artists.
The new skate park will benefit Hoglands Park by becoming a safer and more open and inclusive area. The new plaza-style skate park will feature semi-permanent skateable sculptures, designed by Rich Holland, that draw inspiration from Southampton’s double tides. The semi-permanent sculptures will enable skaters to transform the area to create a landscape that changes with trends and community needs.
Steve from Skate Southampton said:
"We are extremely excited to be working with Rich Holland to shape the future of the skate landscape of Hoglands Park. Together with Southampton City Council and the John Hansard Gallery we have been working hard behind the scenes to enable the design and build a new free, open, and inclusive space in the heart of our city. The moveable structures will allow us to change the design in line with trends that come and go, but the true essence of skateboarding will remain. We still have a lot of work to do but once it's complete it will be an incredible asset and one that hopefully inspires people across our area."
Hoglands Park is a registered Common under the 2006 Act and therefore there are heavy restrictions on how much green space can be converted from green to hard surfacing. The site is also protected by the Register of Historic Landscapes. Whilst these restrictions will affect the height and depth of any building works, Southampton City Council, Skate Southampton, the John Hansard Gallery and other key stakeholders involved with the project are confident that the new skateable sculptures will meet the needs of residents and visitors whilst protecting our open spaces and creating something visually exciting for the area.
Other skate parks in Southampton include Shirley Ponds, Veracity, Riverside park and Hinkler Green, all of which can be used for multiple wheeled sports. A new pump track is now open at Sullivan Road Rec, and there are plans to develop Red Bridge Wharf.
Councillor Lisa Mitchell, Cabinet Member for Housing and Green Environment, Southampton City Council said:
"The skate scene in Southampton is growing and a newly designed skate park by someone as renowned as Rich Holland is a huge boost. He's been involved in some incredibly successful international projects so I have no doubt this will benefit the entire city and put Southampton on the map. We are committed to ensuring that all our parks have high quality facilities for across the city for all to enjoy, and this project is another step towards that."