Text and photography by David Read
First published in Manual #35, September 2009.
A few issues back we ran an article, a little rant in fact, that touched on the state of central Auckland’s skate parks, and lack thereof. Since then, and after a few months of mid-winter slog, Jason Parkes and crew from Premium Skate Designs have finished off a partial cure to the skate park drought that Auckland’s skateboarders have been facing.
Nestled in the central western suburb of Mt Albert, a short drive or bus trip (Auckland has buses, eh?) from downtown, is Owairaka Reserve. Now home to a new breed of skate park from the mind (and hands) of a long time skateboarder, and concrete craftsman. Owairaka is now the new destination for Auckland’s city park goers, especially with the impending doom of Victoria Park.
Jason has brought a fresh look to park design with Owairaka. The new park features obstacles that would look more at home in a European plaza than a suburban skate park. Faux tiled banks and quarter pipes, cantilevered flat banks, a ribbon/wave fly-out and a ledge over gap make up a small but fun-packed park we have long been waiting for.
Check out Manualmagazine.com for more images from Owairaka, and future concept designs for new parks by PSD that will be popping up around New Zealand in the near future.
How to find it:
Head west out of the city on New North Road (which is an extension of Symonds Street), turn left onto Mt Albert Road, then right onto Owairaka Ave.
Closest skate shop:
Cheapskates Khyber Pass is a short ten – fifteen minute drive back towards the city (depending on traffic).
Other parks nearby:
You could head further out west and check out Lynfield bowl which is situated behind Lynfield Shopping Mall just off Hillsborough Road, New Lynn bowl in Bob Hill Reserve or Shadbolt Park on Portage Road in New Lynn East. Back in the city there’s Victoria Park or Tole Street bowl in Ponsonby.