New Kalamazoo Skate Plaza Is A Hit

Aug 16, 2018

A skateboarder at the Davis Street Park on Monday.
Credit Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

A small city park in Kalamazoo is now a destination for skateboarders.


This summer, workers poured concrete in a corner of the Davis Street Park in Kalamazoo’s Vine neighborhood. They added sloping sides, benches and a rail. Since it opened, the skate plaza has drawn crowds daily.

On a recent evening, Dave Engerer resurfaced a board while a dozen or so people skated nearby. Engerer says the city parks department worked with him and other skaters on the plaza’s design.

“It’s just more than we could ask for. It just kind of makes up for the lack of just, like, the basics at the existing skate parks,” he said.

The plaza’s not big, but Engerer says it doesn’t have to be.

“Sometimes less is more. You know, you don’t need necessarily a huge staircase with a big rail. People just want the basics,” he said.

Credit Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Nine-year-old skateboarder Ellie Kraegel expressed her approval as well.

“I really like the park because it’s so smooth, and I think the ramps are really curved so I can land them easy,” she said.

Money from the City of Kalamazoo’s privately funded Foundation for Excellence helped to pay for this and other improvements at the Davis Street Park. City commissioners plan to hold their meeting there September 17, as part of a grand reopening.