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“It was created out of love for Warsaw”, the wall of the skate park was demolished without notice. What’s next for Szaber Bowl?

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One of the walls of the popular skate park under the renovated Poniatowski Bridge has been demolished – warn activists from Miasto Jest Nasze. The Municipal Roads Authority explains that the contractor of the work applied for and received permission to dismantle part of the ramp from the Public Lands Authority, which is responsible for this place. He also emphasizes that Szaber Bowl is an unauthorized construction project that should be demolished. However, the matter is complicated by the lack of an “owner” of the facility.

As activists from MJN recalled on social media, Szaber Bowl was one of the most popular meeting places for skaters in Warsaw. The skate park, which has been operating in Powiśle for several years, was created for nine months, day and night, and was a grass-roots initiative of skateboarding enthusiasts. “Recycled materials were used to build the largest DIY (Do It Yourself – ed.) Bowl in the history of our country. It is the only place in Warsaw of such a scale and character,” they emphasized.

MJN reminded that the Municipal Roads Authority promised that the contractor would secure the site during the works renovation works at the Poniatowski Bridgewhich have been going on for half a year now.

They want compensation

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“At the beginning, however, for unknown reasons, the structure was painted with tar, which the skateboarders had to remove themselves. Unfortunately, a week ago it turned out that the bowl was interfering with renovation works and one of the walls was demolished without notice. What does the Municipal Roads Authority say about this? “Will the contractor take responsibility for the destruction?” – activists ask.

According to MJN, the creators and users of the skate park are demanding: its security until the end of the bridge renovation, financial compensation to rebuild the damaged wall until the city decides to build a new bowl in accordance with the project created several years ago. They also indicated that the skate community also wants to discuss the possibility of completely saving the bowl and the adjacent building in order to create a “cultural center with a unique skate park on the ground floor” in the future.

There was no space, the contractor dismantled the ramp

We asked the Municipal Roads Authority called for an answer by MJN for details. As his spokesman Jakub Dybalski recalled, the area under the viaduct is formally under the care of the Public Lands Authority. – Our contractor for the renovation of the viaduct declared at the very beginning that he was able to carry out the work using scaffolding and lifts, without bothering about what was under the viaduct. Unfortunately, it turned out that there was not enough space where the ramp was and the lift did not reach under the viaduct. Therefore, the contractor asked ZTP for the possibility of dismantling part of the ramp for the purposes of the work and received such consent, he explained.

As he admitted, it is difficult for him to comment on the issue of tar, because – as he assured – “every contractor, after the work has been carried out, is obliged to return the land in the condition (at least) in which it was taken over.”

The spokesman reminded that Szaber Bowl “has been an unauthorized construction project from the very beginning, for which, after long proceedings, a valid demolition order was issued by the District Construction Supervision Inspectorate.” – Since it is difficult to determine the “owner” who should be charged with the demolition costs, the obligation to carry it out rests with the city, i.e. ZTP. As far as I know, ZTP is preparing a tender for such works and plans to develop this area later – he further explained.

We also asked ZTP about the future of Szaber Bowl in this location. We are waiting for answer.

They protested against the demolition

In March 2019, we informed about the project new Szaber Bowl. It was planned to be built under the arcades of the Poniatowski Bridge, right next to the existing one. The old one was supposed to be forgotten.

In turn, in 2018, we wrote that the construction supervision found that it was present the construction is illegal. ZTP informed that we were dealing with “unauthorized construction, for which the District Construction Supervision Inspectorate issued a demolition order on November 20, 2017”.

PINB explained that “the investor’s identity could not be determined.” At that time, a demolition plan was being prepared at ZTP, but it did not happen.

The information electrified the skateboarding community. They quickly issued a statement in which they argued that the Bowl was built thanks to the involvement of residents and should not be destroyed. They recalled that bringing the facility to its current shape was possible thanks to a public collection in which over 300 people were involved. And they argued that today the facility is very popular among both amateurs and professionals from all over the world. They proved that it was the largest Bowl in Poland, created in the spirit of the DIY philosophy. They built it with their own hands, adapting the space of unfinished pavilions that were supposed to be built here in the 1990s. “It was created out of love for Warsaw and its inhabitants, passion for skateboarding and true friendship,” argued the defenders of this place.

Main photo source: Tomasz Zieliński / tvnwarszawa.pl, Facebook / MJN

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