Jimmy Miller believes patience and persistence is the key to getting anything done, especially when it comes to building a skatepark on the West Shore.
The spokesperson for WestShore Skatepark Coalition, he spent his Sunday with a handful of volunteers in the parking lot of the Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre in Colwood for a bottle drive.
On Jan. 3, dozens of residents dropped off bags filled to the brim with cans and glass bottles.
Miller has been pushing for a new skatepark since the one near the old Belmont school was torn down in 2015.
“Skateboarding has been a way to keep sane,” said Miller in a previous comment. “It’s an outlet. As a father, it’s something I find myself doing more and more with my kids.”
Although the WestShore Skatepark Coalition was able to raise more than $9,000 at a bottle drive in August, it only puts a small dent in the approximately $306,400 expected to be funded by the community for the project. The estimates for the entire project, by design company New Line Skatepark Inc., price the skatepark at $766,000.
Miller noted the coalition is still waiting to hear from Langford and Metchosin to confirm their financial support, as View Royal, Colwood and Highlands have already agreed to be part of five West Shore municipalities to fund 60 per cent of the project.
“One concern of mine would be the longer we wait, we don’t know if the final cost might rise,” Miller said. The estimated cost jumped an additional $166,000 in late 2019, due to the cost of concrete and inflation.
The coalition has applied for multiple grants, but Miller said he doesn’t want to get his hopes up yet.
“Our mantra is ‘not if but when,’” said Miller. “It’s a real test of one’s perseverance. This is a long game and although I would love to make it shorter, we’re in it for the long haul to win it.”
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