Skate Park Construction Faster with Flexible Composite Rebar

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Designing and constructing a skate park calls on specialized skills and material technology to deliver a park suitable for high-performance athletes. The flexural and lightweight traits of glass fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) composite rebar proved to be a major advantage during the construction.

The $2.6 million redevelopment of a much-loved skatepark in Alfred Cox Park, Gisborne is setting a new standard in the design and construction of skate parks nationwide. Skateboarding, now an Olympic sport, has always had a loyal fan base that is only growing with competitive events on the rise. Pultron supplied Mateenbar™ composite rebar for the project from its Gisborne facility.

“It's easy to bend into corners, easy to stay in place. Once we learned how to use it properly we were away. We’ll definitely be looking to use it on future skatepark projects,” says Angus McMillan of AMC - Skatepark Construction Ltd.

First-ever skate park to use Mateenbar™ as its concrete reinforcement

Composite rebar is used in a range of projects including bridges, roads, and industrial projects but has also proven suitable for specialist projects where the combined traits of composite rebar offer improved performance and cost savings. The distinction of being the first-ever skate park to use Mateenbar™ for its reinforcement also provides some notable advantages, such as:

  • Corrosion resistance
  • Lightweight
  • Less concrete coverage is required
  • Easy to flex into large radius curves
  • Easy to install
  • Less maintenance

This unique project demonstrates some of the reasons why Mateenbar™ non-metallic rebar is converting engineers, asset owners, and contractors to use composite rebar instead of traditional concrete reinforcement materials. With its ability to flex into large radius curves, there are opportunities for engineers and architects to design complex shapes that can easily be constructed on site.

Angus MacMillan of AMC – Skatepark Construction Ltd specializes in constructing skateparks all over the country. He is a fine combination of concrete contractor, material scientist, and sculptor. Angus has developed various techniques and customized equipment that help refine the construction process.

Shotcrete composite rebar

Angus (left) and his team shotcreting the skate bowl

Composite Rebar Speeds Up Construction

The Gisborne Skate Park Redevelopment was his first introduction to using composite rebar instead of traditional steel rebar. When using Mateenbar™, Angus and his team found it delivered significant time savings.

  • It is faster and lighter to lay up which saves time and worker fatigue.
  • When constructing a skatepark there needs to be a certain amount of creative flexibility to ensure the curves and falls blend seamlessly. Bending steel rebar is slow and difficult whereas Mateenbar™ was easily pushed into place with the flex properties creating smooth flowing shapes.

“It's easy to bend into corners, easy to stay in place. Once we learned how to use it properly we were away. We’ll definitely be looking to use it on future skatepark projects,” says Angus.

Community Project a Collaborative Effort

The project was the vision of the Tairawhiti Adventure Trust and was made a reality thanks to:

Project Manager: Shane Kingsbeer, Tairawhiti Adventure Trust
Skatepark design specialist: RICH Landscapes
Skate Park Construction Specialist: AMC – Skatepark Construction Ltd
Construction: Currie Construction
Structural Engineering: Clark Structural Engineering
Funding Support: Trust Tairawhiti

A special mention to the team at AMC – Skatepark Construction Ltd for taking out the Supreme Award Winner in the Environmental/Sustainable Category at this year's New Zealand Concrete Contractor's AGM and Awards meeting. Congratulations!!

Photos: @tairawhitiadventuretrust