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Details emerge on new Northville Township skatepark honoring late skateboard-loving resident

 Details emerge on new Northville Township skatepark honoring late skateboard-loving resident

A rendering of a Spohn Ranch skatepark design.

Northville Township is on a roll.

The Board of Trustees recently unanimously voted to add a new amenity for residents to enjoy at one of the township parks.

It approved contracts to:

• Welcome a skatepark to Millennium Park in 2023.

• Name it Unity Skatepark.

• Include a memorial to honor Township resident Dominic Duhn, whose tragic death from a hit-and-run while skateboarding inspired this grass-roots project for the community’s benefit.

• Forge a partnership with the Dominic Duhn Foundation, Inc., to provide donations towards the design and construction of it.

• Select Spohn Ranch Inc. to oversee the design and construction of this amenity.

Inspiring ideas

“We are taking strategic steps to make Northville Township a truly unique community,” said Township Supervisor Mark J. Abbo. “We have a dog agility course at Marv Gans Community Park. We’re adding some biking, hiking and nature trails to the 332-acre Legacy Park, and next year, you’ll be able to enjoy Unity Skatepark. What an exciting time to be a Northville Township resident.”

Unity Skatepark will be located on the grounds of Millennium Park. PHOTO: Google Maps
Unity Skatepark will be located on the grounds of Millennium Park. PHOTO: Google Maps

Spohn Ranch was one of two companies to bid on the skatepark project. The firm has constructed nine parks in the state of Michigan, including those in Garden City and Milford. Two others are in the process.

It will seek the public’s input on the design by creating a Facebook site and host an in-person meeting to understand what the community values in its skatepark.

Once it’s built, Northville Parks and Recreation, a shared service of both the Township and the City of Northville, will oversee the skatepark and is responsible for its maintenance.

Funding the project

Depending on the design, the size of the skatepark may be about 10,000 square feet. Projected costs are $600,000.

Northville Township has committed $150,000 to it, along with $83,327 it receives from the Wayne County Parks millage allocation.

The City of Northville has committed $8,123 from its Wayne County Parks millage allocation. The balance of $359,000 was raised through various supporters and fundraisers hosted by the Duhn family and a 501c3 Foundation.

Dominic Duhn poses for a photo with his arms crossed over his knees and a smile on his face
Dominic Duhn

Dominic’s legacy

“Dominic’s story touched a lot of people,” Northville Parks and Recreation Director Debra Bilbrey-Honsowetz said. “His family and friends came together to heal, and this project came about as a wonderful way to honor him while giving the community a tremendous gift.”

Ground breaking will be in the spring of 2023 with an expected completion by late summer time.

“This project started off to honor our son, Dominic, and then quickly expanded into helping our youth with all the positive benefits skateboarding offers,” said Gabriella Duhn, Dominic’s mother and champion of this project.

“The outpouring of endorsements and financial support from the community and beyond to make this project a reality is so greatly appreciated and will forever be remembered.”

“It only makes sense to name it Unity Skatepark, as it took so many to come together for the greater good of others,” she added. “I am so grateful that Mark Abbo, the Township Board of Trustees and I are working as a united team to make this skatepark a unique amenity for all ages to enjoy.

“Now my vision for Unity Skatepark is to be a place where all are welcome with no judgement to come skate, hang out, laugh and make good memories, which is exactly how Dominic lived his life.”

If you have a story idea for SocialHouseNews.com, please contact Ed Wright at 734-664-4657 or edwright@socialhousenews.com.

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