Albany Snake Run Skateboard Park


City of Albany

Place Number



162 Hare St Mount Clarence

Location Details


Other Name(s)

Skateboard Track
Snake Run Skate Park

Local Government



Great Southern

Construction Date

Demolition Year


Statutory Heritage Listings

Type Status Date Documents
Heritage List Adopted 27 Oct 2020
State Register Registered 17 May 2016 HCWebsite.Listing+ListingDocument, HCWebsite.Listing+ListingDocument

Heritage Council Decisions and Deliberations

Type Status Date Documents
(no listings)

Other Heritage Listings and Surveys

Type Status Date Grading/Management
Local Heritage Survey Adopted 27 Oct 2020 Exceptional

Statement of Significance

Albany Snake Run Skateboard Park, a reinforced concrete downhill skateboard track set within a 1.25 hectare park, has cultural heritage significance for the following reasons: The place is the oldest surviving skate park in Australia, and the second oldest in the World. The place is thought to be the world’s first community-built skate park. The place is rare on an international level as a downhill slalom style skate park, the earliest style of skate park to be adopted, and is considered to be an excellent design that is believed to have influenced the basic concept of other skateboard tracks in the US. The place is representative of the early development of skateboarding in Australia, which became popular in the mid 1970s. The place is highly valued by the skating community of Western Australia as the first purpose-built skate park in the state. The place is associated with skateboarding, a global cultural activity that is appreciated around the world.

Physical Description

The Hare Street Skate Park is set within a 1.25ha parks and recreation reserve that was a former gravel quarry site. The skate park is fairly centrally located within the reserve with grassed areas surrounding the track and trees set further back that form the parkland setting. The lot slopes down from south to north and the track was located to take advantage of this slope and the excavated areas left from the previous quarrying operations. The track is reinforced concrete approximately 140m in length, varying in width from 6 to 8 metres with an average slope of 1:10. The banked sweeping curves were formed for skateboard riding to mimic surfing. Beginner riders can take the gentle central line whilst more experienced riders can use the banked sides for greater speed and for performing tricks on the 'vert walls' and 'hips', before ending up in the trick bowl at the end of the run. The vert walls were added later to give increased height to some of the banks for more trick options.


In 1975 students from Albany High School established a Skateboard Track Committee with the objective of building a skateboard track in Albany. The students, aged between 13 and 17 years, started raising funds with their parents’ help, and within three months had raised $3000. The Town of Albany was so impressed with the students, that they contributed an additional $10,000 to the project, as well as donating a sloping block of land near the High School. The donated land was formerly the site of a series of old gravel quarries. The layout of the 140 metre long track generally followed the excavation area of the main gravel pit. In some areas sandfill was introduced to build up the inside bank and increase the slope of the track. The track was specifically designed to suit a variety of skill levels, with an average slope of 1 in 10. Construction began in January 1976 and was completed by the end of the month. The track was officially opened in February 1976. The reigning US National Skateboard champion, Russ Howell, who was touring Australian at the time, was guest of honour at the opening and the publicity went worldwide. At the opening, Howell considered the Albany Snake Run the best track he’d ever seen. Howell went on to win more championships and set more records. In January 1979, Australia’s first National Skateboard Championship was held at the Snake Run. Although the place continued to be well used the slalom and downhill styles of skating had become less popular as ‘vert skating’ (skating in a vertical incline) became more popular. By the 1980s skateparks were designed more around ramps and bowls which allowed for more difficult tricks. An additional vertical wall was later added to the Snake Run to increase the height and make the track more difficult. When the place was entered on the State Register, skateboarder Russ Howell returned to the park to skate as part of the celebrations of this event (included in the Perth International Arts Festival 2016). (In 2015, the Snake Run was entered in the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest surviving skatepark in the world, however it is believed that there is an older one in New Zealand.)


Integrity: High Authenticity: High/Moderate




Ref ID No Ref Name Ref Source Ref Date
HCWA Assessment documentation, Albany Snake Run Skateboard Park, P1972 September 2015
Albany Advertiser, 19 February 1976

State Heritage Office library entries

Library Id Title Medium Year Of Publication

Place Type

Urban Park


Epoch General Specific
Present Use PARK\RESERVE Park\Reserve
Original Use PARK\RESERVE Park\Reserve

Construction Materials

Type General Specific
Wall CONCRETE Other Concrete

Historic Themes

General Specific
SOCIAL & CIVIC ACTIVITIES Sport, recreation & entertainment

Creation Date

15 Apr 1998

Publish place record online (inHerit):


Last Update

14 Jan 2022


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