Located in Seattle’s Green Lake Park, Duck Island is an important habitat for local birdlife. Though it lost its status as a nature reserve in 1983, the island is still technically off-limits to humans. In the past, this ordinance has occasionally been violated by late-night partiers. This summer, however, Seattle skateshop 35 North violated the ban by building a concrete skate bowl on the island as part of a contest sponsored by Transworld Skateboarding.
Yesterday, the city attorney’s office announced that it would be suing 35 North and the 20 participants in the project. Since the skatepark was part of a contest, the construction was extremely well-documented, including extensive video footage. Though the skate park originally won the contest, it was disqualified as soon as the illegal nature of the park came to the attention of the organizers. The city will be seeking damages for restoration work, erosion control, litter removal and replanting, a total that will likely be in the low six figures.