BAYONNE, NJ – There’s rolling, gliding, jumping, and even a little flying at 1st Street down underneath the Bayonne Bridge, as the city’s youth are once again enjoying a skateboard park.
Residents were using the $300,000-plus facility before it was totally finished and even before it was officially opened last week at a ribbon cutting that included city officials and dozens of skaters. Among them was Gary Iannitelli of the Classic Skate Shop on Broadway, who many credited as the driving force behind the new park.
Mayor James Davis and the five members of the City Council were on hand for the grand opening ceremony at Dennis P. Collins Park on June 21. It was held on the nationally observed Go Skateboarding Day.
First Ward Councilman Tom Cotter said the new all-concrete park replaced a subpar older one, which consisted partially of old rubber and steel.
“It was on asphalt, so you wouldn’t get a smooth riding surface,” Cotter said.
The skate park is part of Davis’ Parks Improvement Initiative, and is one of the most comprehensive park reconstruction projects undertaken by the city over the past two years, according to Chief of Staff Andrew Casais.
The mayor said he was buoyed by the response to the park by the Bayonne skating community.
“People said they have been all over the state and it was the nicest,” Davis said. “They said this is the best one in New Jersey.”
The park took only about two months to build, Casais said. The city bonded for the project.