Plans to Build Skate Park in Rhondda Cynon Taf Park Spark Fears over Anti-Social Behaviour
Plans to build a skate park in a Rhondda Cynon Taf park have sparked some fears over anti-social behaviour.
Llanharry Community Council has submitted plans for the skate park at Llanharry Park on Llanharry Road and they are due to go before RCT’s planning committee on Thursday, December 14.
It would be in the north-eastern corner of the park and with landscaping and access would cover a surface area of approximately 989sq m, with a skateable area of 314sq m.
The skateable part would be constructed from freeform concrete, which would enable a range of features, including ramps, pipes, ledges and rails, with the maximum height of any structure being 1.5m.
The plans show that two benches and litter bins would be provided but the site is not proposed to be lit.
Eight letters of objection and one letter of support have been received.
The objections raised concern over anti-social behaviour and crime, including increased littering, drinking and use of drugs. They said the site and surrounding suffers from antisocial behaviour with gangs of up to 30 youths congregating and residents being verbally abused. It was also reported that community hall staff have had to clear up broken glass from outside.
They claimed that older children are coming from other areas to use the park and motorbikes have been using the park and lanes nearby as a circuit. They also raised concerns about the loss of parkland for families, vandalisation, public urination and noise pollution.
They said if the plans are approved, the site should be fenced and locked at 9pm and that there has been no evidence of the park being monitored.
But one comment said the provision for young people in the area is poor and the site is relatively far from many properties.
They urged officers and councillors to consider the needs of young people and not be “unduly influenced” by the “small but vociferous” view that youths gathering bring noise and litter and no provision should be made for them.
In recommending approval, RCT planning officers say in their report: “The location of the proposed skate park within Llanharry Park is one where it
would be least likely to have a detrimental impact on the amenity of the closest neighbouring occupiers and would not affect the openness of the remaining public space.
“Furthermore, the skate park would be beneficial to the wellbeing of younger
members of the community where there is clearly a demand and currently an
absence of an easily accessible alternative facility.”
They said it would “provide the local community with an additional leisure
and sport facility within a park that has been long established as being used for these purposes”.
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