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Ferndale is closer to building a skate park in Pioneer Park

Skate park design rendering (June 2020). Source: City of Ferndale

FERNDALE, Wash. — After their 2018 application for a Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) grant was declined, City of Ferndale officials have reapplied and it looks like this year’s application may make the cut as it has been ranked 4th in the preliminary ranking among 80 applications. 3 other applications were proposing skate parks.

Ferndale used to have a small skate park located by the Nooksack River and between Main Street and the Burlington Northern-Santa Fe railroad overpass near a sanitary sewer pump station. But the 2 rails and some bleachers were removed by the city in 2016 to allow for upgrades to the pump station.

The proposed skate park would be located on a third of an acre at the site of the former fieldhouse in Pioneer Park next to an existing ballfield and near the Pioneer Park Cabins, Star Park, Phillips 66 Sports Complex, a bicycle pump track and the Ferndale Boys & Girls Clubhouse.

The proposed location of the skate park. Source: City of Ferndale RCO grant application

The proposed skate park would offer more than the 2 rails and bleachers that made up the previous skate park. According to the grant application, the 10,000-square-foot skate park would be equipped with 2 covered areas with 2 tables each, a quarter-pipe, a jump created by 2 ramps, a “pump bump” and a “bowl.”

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The proposed design of the skate park. Source: City of Ferndale RCO grant application

The current grant applications asks for $480,000 which would need to be matched by $61,850 by the city plus $20,000 in donations according to the RCO website. The match amount is less than other grants which can require 50% matches.

The preliminary rankings will be provided to the state legislature at their next legislative session when they will decide how many, if any, of the applications will be funded. “There may not be a lot of money available during this session,” City Communications Officer Riley Sweeney said. “But we are very optimistic given our ranking.”

An announcement regarding grant awards is not expected until the summer of 2021.

RCO grants are funded by the sale of general obligation bonds which are then paid back using state tax revenue.

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