A skateboard rolling down the road. Photo by: Pexels.com
A skateboard rolling down the road. Photo by: Pexels.com

Can skateboarding save inner urban environments?

Tony Hawk and the city of Detroit have announced that they will be working together to create a new skatepark scheduled to open on August 16.

The Wayfinding skatepark will double as a performance space and public art installation featuring the work by artist Ryan McGinness. It will also be open and free to the public.


As a resident in Illinois, I get sick to my stomach with major news outlets constantly reporting and glorifying crime. It bothers me so much, that I sit around and think about how could we repair the system of urban development.

My solution is similar to Hawk’s initiative with Detroit. In addition to building a skatepark, I have an additional solution to one of the biggest problems behind crime; available jobs.

It was the best news of the month reading in the Detroit Free Press that Tony Hawk partnered with the city to help bring a skatepark to Detroit. Just the idea of creating an area where building skill sets within skateboarding is more important than focusing on drugs and violence is a huge step forward.

The Detroit Free Press reported:

“It was a great opportunity to get something in the downtown area that is a proper skate park.” – Tony Hawk

I see skateparks as being vital to communities, but the skatepark itself needs additional layers to solve additional problems.

One of the major reasons I find that crime takes place is the lack of proper jobs within inner cities.

First, I blame the federal government, and the people that elect officials that vote and allow major corporations the ability to outsource jobs in countries for less pay.

The reason crime is so high in our developed country is because we allow politicians to give corporations the ability to outsource jobs. Without proper jobs, people result to crime. 

Americanprogress.org reported:

U.S. multinationals shifted millions of jobs overseas in the 2000s. Data from the U.S. Department of Commerce showed that “U.S. multinational corporations, the big brand-name companies that employ a fifth of all American workers… cut their work forces in the U.S. by 2.9 million during the 2000s while increasing employment overseas by 2.4 million.”

Furthermore, a recent Wall Street Journal analysis showed, “Thirty-five big U.S.-based multinational companies added jobs much faster than other U.S. employers in the past two years, but nearly three-fourths of those jobs were overseas.”

Another serious problem with the United States outsourcing jobs is that the people are not demanding and questioning politicians about it more. We have to push to bring jobs back to our country, and elect politicians that will create regulations preventing companies from sending jobs to other countries. Currently, our president has not made any regulation or law that will help bring back jobs within the United States.

We also cannot wait for politicians to do proper work.

Second, I find that our country will have to start training and providing jobs to people within inner cities.

That leads me back to the skatepark in Detroit.

My solution to reducing crime is to first build skateparks in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles that would have one level of a building made just for skating. That bottom level will get people in the door to be apart of the excitement from skateboarding.

Next, I plan to create a second level with a training centers.

These training centers will provide Internet for one hour, similar to a library, but also give people the opportunity to stay online after an hour to learn coding skills, as well as skills in robotics and automation. In reality, primary education should be teaching these skills, but I will need to build leverage first with the skatepark system, before I try to take on reworking the education system.

My plan is to provide additional Internet access to those that complete the training. I see a system that would allow extra hours of surfing the Web, in exchange for learning coding skills. 

On the third floor will be recruiters that normally go to underdeveloped countries, and pay them to guide the trained candidates to modern jobs.

The fourth floor will be made for online jobs that focus on coding skills. A fifth floor would be made to cater to automation jobs.

Management would oversee work on the fourth and fifth floors, and help candidates bring in new people to turn away from drugs and violence, and help them get back on their feet.

In underdeveloped countries they are already building training centers for low-income workers. We are going to have to vote and make politicians write laws that force domestic companies to invest in cities that they generate the most revenue from, and I find that Chicago, New York and Los Angeles is an excellent start.

Currently, I am building up the brand of this media outlet to acquire enough financial resources to start investing in these parks. Without a large sum of investment money, it will take me two decades to acquire enough wealth to start these projects. If someone beats me to the punch; that would be excellent news overall.

Double dipping in The D with @milesgizmo 📷: @catherine_o

A post shared by Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) on

Tony Hawk wants to build modular skate park in Detroit

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Matthew McGuire is the founder and editor of Crescent Vale News. In 2014, he acquired a master's degree in Professional Media and Media Management from Southern Illinois University Carbondale.