Sunday, 27 September 2020


Whitianga skatepark progress

Earlier this month, the Mercury Bay Skatepark Trust (“MBST”) and Thames-Coromandel District Council appointed international company, Convic, to design the new skatepark that’s earmarked to be built at Taylor’s Mistake in Whitianga.

“We’re pleased to have taken the first formal step towards a new skatepark in the Whitianga town centre,” says Chris Devenoges of the MBST. “Our arrangement with TCDC is that the community will come up with about one-third of the costs of the skatepark. The total design costs came in at just under $30,000.”

TCDC budgeted a contribution of approximately $20,000 towards the design of the skatepark. The MBST’s contribution for the remainder of the design costs was made up from funds raised through the sale of t-shirts and donations from The Informer and Ray Burgess, the owner of the building immediately adjacent to the existing skatepark at Taylor’s Mistake, as well as Chris and the other trustees of the trust.

TCDC allocated $450,000 towards the construction of the skatepark in their 2020/2021 financial year, which amount can be requested to be brought forward if it’s feasible to start construction earlier than July next year.

“We estimate that the construction of a new skatepark will cost in the vicinity of $600,000 and our challenge is now to come up with a contribution of $150,000,” says Chris. “Once we have a design and can finalise costings, we’ll be approaching a variety of gaming trusts and philanthropic organisations for grants. In the meantime, we’ll be selling more t-shirts through Blackjack Surf in Whitianga and also would like to encourage the Mercury Bay community to donate towards the skatepark. The MBST is registered as a charity, which means all donors, businesses and individuals, can claim a tax benefit.

“In addition to the support we’ve already received from The Informer and Ray Burgess, PlaceMakers Whitianga has also thrown their weight in behind the new skatepark with a pledge of some materials to be provided at cost and incentive schemes that will make it easy for their trade and retail customers to support us as well.

“The skatepark is an exceptionally good cause to support as it will benefit the entire community for many, many years to come.

“We plan to provide some form of enduring public recognition to all those who contributed to the skatepark. That may be in the form of putting up a plaque with the names of all donors in the vicinity of the skatepark or etching their names into the concrete of the skatepark itself.”

The Informer will also publish the names of all those who donated to the skatepark over the course of the next four months in our Summer Magazine 2019/2020 that will be published before Christmas this year.

Convic is a leader in skatepark and youth space design. Included in their portfolio are skateparks across Australia, and the Valonia skatepark and Waterview BMX park in Auckland. The company has also designed skateparks in Dubai and Shanghai and an extreme sports park in Singapore. “The people at Convic think outside the square,” says Chris. “Their skateparks aren’t necessarily rectangular in shape and they’re also not afraid to use colour.”

Convic will facilitate three workshops next month to obtain public input in the design of the new Whitianga skatepark. The first workshop will be focusing on the thoughts and ideas of school students and will be held at Mercury Bay Area School on Thursday 22 August from 3:00pm to 5:00pm. The second workshop will also be held on 22 August, from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at the Mercury Bay Community Boardroom (behind the TCDC offices in Monk Street, Whitianga). The third workshop will be held on Friday 23 August, also at the Mercury Bay Community Boardroom.

Donations towards the new skatepark can be deposited into the Mercury Bay Skatepark Trust bank account with Westpac, account number 03 1578 0110921 000. All donors must please email Chris at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with their name, contact details and amount of their donation in order to be issued with a receipt and to be included in the list of supporters who will be publicly recognised for their contribution to the skatepark.

Pictured: Chris Devenoges (left) and Caleb Jennings, two of the trustees of the Mercury Bay Skatepark Trust, at a sign at Taylor’s Mistake in Whitianga indicating the trust’s goal of raising $150,000 for a new skatepark in the Whitianga town centre.


Latest business rest of site

The Vessel Bar and Restaurant

Come relax and enjoy our chilled atmosphere with your favourite drinks and sample our menu of tasty American Style BBQ​


Do you plan to vote in next month’s general election and referendums?

The Mercury Bay Informer is a highly popular community newspaper, based in Whitianga. The paper is distributed throughout the Coromandel Peninsula, coast to coast from Thames to north of Colville.