Kids in Wallerawang and Portland are celebrating the announcement of $600,000 in funding to build and complete two brand new skate parks.
Member for Bathurst Paul Toole announced $200,000 each for Wallerawang and Portland, while Lithgow City Council will put in $100,000 per skate park.
The skate parks will be built in their current locations at Tweedie Street in Wallerawang and on Kremer Park in Portland.
According to Roslyn Francis from the Wallerawang Progress Association they have been lobbying for a new skate park for over four years.
“It is just fabulous, the council have been amazing, they had meeting with the kids who had their input used in the designs,” she said.
The kids saw 10 different skate park designs and were asked to rate each one so that council could get a good understanding of what was wanted.
“I am glad both Portland and Wallerawang got the funding because it makes the kids happy and they will now have something to do during school holidays and after school,” she said.
Lithgow City Mayor Ray Thompson was pleased that Lithgow City Council could put money forth to make this happen.
“The Lithgow skate park is very popular with the younger people and we built that one around 8 or 9 years ago,” he said.
“Now the kids from Portland and Wallerawang won’t have to travel to Lithgow to use that skate park, they will have an up to date one of their own.
“Play has changed over the years, it use to be cowboys and Indians but now it’s riding at the skate park so we have to help give the kids what they need.
“Kids will be able to get out and have fun while still being in full vision of adults and and being out in the open means they are less likely to be getting into trouble.”
According to Cr Thompson, the official designs have been approved but have not gone to tender yet.
MP Paul Toole said one of the main reasons why they decided to give funding to this cause was because it was a direct response to community needs within the two towns.
“The old skate parks at both Wallerawang and Portland have aged poorly and in summer the metal is too hot and it becomes dangerous, when it’s wet they slide and skid,” he said.
“Funding towards new facilities would reduce the need for travel, and promote youth physical activity in the two towns.”
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro said the announcement was one to be proud of.
“I congratulate the community of Lithgow for raising this project as one needed by the community, the Council for supporting it and the local member Paul Toole, for making it happen,” he said.