In a city where temperatures and ice-covered concrete prevent outdoor skateboarding for at least one-third of the year, having access to a safer and inclusive indoor space is essential for the city’s vibrant skateboarding community. In the absence of a facility of this kind within the city, Manitoba Skateboarding Coalition rallied the community together to respond to this need.
On June 21 The Manitoba Skateboarding Coalition is thrilled to announce the opening of Pitikwé Skatepark, a do-it-yourself, community-driven, pilot project inside Portage Place. Pitikwé, pronounced “pee-tih-kway”, is a Cree word meaning “Come in” - a way of welcoming any visitors into your home when you hear a knock at the door. The name reflects what we are trying to accomplish in the new space.
This park would not have come to life without the help of our community and partners. Spence Neighborhood Association is our charitable partner and we look forward to partnering with them on efforts to serve the youth of their neighbourhood. Forks North Portage Partnership has been generous with funding that will go towards creating this space and accessible programming for the youth in the Central Park Neighbourhood.
Pitikwé Skatepark encourages skateboarders, scooters, roller skaters, and BMX riders of all ages and skill levels to get involved in the space. Through community collaboration, we strive to address inequity in both sports and society, enrich downtown Winnipeg with life-giving programming, community-building events, a safe space for recreation and empower individuals of diverse backgrounds. We will be hosting open houses and drop-in sessions until the grand opening this fall, with full hours and programming announced through our website and social media.
From this summer onward until the end of winter, Pitikwé Skatepark will be treated as a pilot project, taking this opportunity to learn from and collaborate with the community. With the future transformation and redevelopment of Portage Place, the hope is that Pitikwé Skatepark will remain in the community.
With the vision of providing inclusive community spaces, there has never been a better time to support our efforts in developing Pitikwé Skatepark. This space will not only serve skateboarders but also function as a future hub for youth programming and community events, fostering connections among people from diverse backgrounds and providing a safer space for socializing, exercising, and skill development.
THE SKATEBOARD PARK AIMS TO PROVIDE A SAFE AND INCLUSIVE FACILITY THAT FOSTERS A LOVE OF SKATEBOARDING AND BUILDS COMMUNITY THROUGH COLLABORATIVE DESIGN AND ONGOING ENGAGEMENT WITH THOSE UTILIZING THE SPACE
The Manitoba skateboarding coalition is committed to creating a safe, welcoming, and inclusive community for all, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, ability, age, religion, or any other factor that may contribute to marginalization or discrimination. We believe that skateboarding is for everyone and we strive to eliminate barriers and promote equity in all aspects of our work. We are dedicated to listening to and amplifying the voices of underrepresented groups within the skateboarding community, and to working collaboratively to build a more diverse and inclusive skateboarding culture in Manitoba.
393 Portage Avenue (Old Staples space)
Main Entrance at Portage & Vaughn
When dropping off and picking up by vehicle, use the parking lane on Portage Avenue, there is space for approx. 6 cars. The park entrance is within eyesight and less than 50 feet from your car.
When accessing the space by bike, you are welcome to bring your bike inside, or lock it on any available spaces outside Portage Place.
Wheelchair-friendly access from Portage Avenue and elevators from the parkade.
RENTAL RATE: TBD
The Skateboard Park will have its own trained security guard on-site for any open or rental sessions. As well, Portage Place will have security on-site 24/7. All staff and volunteers will be trained in non-violent crisis intervention. All staff
and volunteers are required to have criminal background checks. All staff and volunteers will be trained in diversity and inclusivity to ensure they are able to facilitate a safer environment for all people.
Safe walks provided by Downtown Community Safety Partnership upon request.
All participants are required to sign a digital waiver, available upon arrival, before accessing the space.
Skate Park users will be able to park in Portage Place parkade and have a subsidized rate of $3.50 for 2 hours (regular rate is $4 per hour). For other parking options, The Downtown Biz has a great parking resource page at: https://downtownwinnipegbiz.com/
The Skateboard Park is a 24,000 square foot space, with all gender washrooms.
There are skateboards, helmets and safety pads available to use at no cost.
There is a lounge area for parents and spectators.
Access to Portage Place Mall services include: Tim Hortons, A&W, Subway, and Shoppers Drug Mart.
With the future of Portage Place tentative, we are treating this park as a pilot project and we are in talks with parties interested in the future of the space.
A MANITOBA WHERE SKATEBOARDING IS ACCESSIBLE TO ALL, AND WHERE COMMUNITIES EMBRACE AND CELEBRATE THE UNIQUE CULTURE AND ATHLETICISM OF SKATEBOARDING.