Wow, this a BLAST from the PAST! Michael Cornelius’ coverage of the opening of Snedigar Sports Complex AKA Chandler Skatepark for his site, SkateRock.com. Our old friend is 16 years old! Old enough to drive! I still frequent this awesome chunk of ‘crete and revel in all it’s quirks and weirdness. It’s still got one of the best street areas around. Have fun! Apologies for the small grainy photos, it was the year 2000 after all and digital photos were in their infancy.
by Michael Cornelius
The boom of public skateparks continues in the USA and in Arizona. The latest addition was dedicated March 4th, 2000 at Snedigar Sportsplex in Chandler, Arizona, a sleepy suburb of Phoenix.
On the grand opening day skaters, family, and friends were out in force. People packed the parks perimeter fence watching all the skate action. Pro skaters and ripping locals were on hand for a demo before the ribbon cutting ceremony.
The park is nice and big with feature for every ability level. The design and flow was very well done by Site Design Group (SDG), the same company who laid out the excellent Flagstaff, AZ park among others.
The park features several handrails and ledges including 2 long kinked rails. There are grindable ledges stashed all over the park for street rippers. The street/freestyle area is sunken and has a wide assortment of banks and bowls around the perimeter. In the center of the street/freestyle area is a fun box with a handrail, a rollover hump and a near vert, eight sided volcano. The park has a lot of transition and is not for the trannyphobic. An all around skater can use the transitions and banks to attain incredible speeds. The cement finishing was done perfectly thanks to Shane Rathman who understands the needs of skaters.
About 10 feet from the smaller pool is a monster bowl that has to be seen to be fully appreciated. It has a 9 foot square deep deep end with 1 foot of true vert. The shallower section has a spine out to a volcano. There are extensions, escalator and hips all over the place. There are truly endless lines in this bowl. All the pool dogs will be out to session this wonder.Most of the heavy action was in this pool. Local skater Andy Levy was boosting 4 foot high stalefish airs off of the hip. Pro skater Brian Patch was rolling in at full tilt and 50-50’ing damn near the whole square side of the bowl. Brian Harper from AZP and Site Design Group was showing the kids how to float a frontside air. A friendly snake session was in progress so there was never a dull moment in the bowl.
Little grommets are kept in check by the fact that neither bowl has a roll-in.
Due to the crowds I didn’t have the opportunity to taste all of the parks features but I can say that this park definitely sets a new standard for gnarly public parks. If you are in the area it is a “must skate”. It also keeps the flow going since no wall is broken up.
The Chandler Skatepark is at 4800 S. Basha Rd. in south Chandler. It is a free public skatepark with no silly rules. For more information you can contact the City of Chandler Recreation Division at 480-782-2702.