The Capitol Hill skateboard shop sued by the City of Seattle over construction of a guerrilla skate park on an island in the middle of Green Lake last summer has agreed to pay $30,000 to help restore damage from the stunt.
“35th North settled this matter because it was interested in maintaining a working relationship with the skateboarding community and the City of Seattle,” 35th North owner Tony Croghan said in the city’s announcement of the settlement.
This fall, E Pike’s 35th North and a group of John and Jane Doe skaters were sued by the city over construction of a skateboard feature on Green Lake’s Duck Island in a contest sponsored by Transworld Skateboarding Magazine. At one point, the Seattle project was named a winner in the Nike-sponsored competition but video of the project was later removed from the magazine’s site. Neither Nike nor the magazine were named in the suit.
Croghan declined to say much about the suit due to legal concerns, he told CHS in November. “I would love to speak to you as this moves forward as we have so much history, friends and love for our neighborhood that we have been in for over the last years,” Croghan said.
Croghan later told Vice that he felt “deeply disrespected by the city I grew up in.” “I have owned a local business for almost 20 years—half my life—and was apparently not worthy of one phone call or email from the city before they filed this,” Croghan told the site. “I feel as if I am not looked at as a business owner and member of the business community for some reason. It’s crushing. It really is.”
The city alleged the construction damaged the island’s “trees, vegetation, and the underlying land” and was seeking “land restoration costs and an additional civil penalty of $5,000 per tree” as well as lawyer fees and other costs to be determined by the court. The City Attorney’s office said it expected to seek damages in “the low six figures” in the case.
In the settlement announcement, the City Attorney said the $30,000 “will fully cover the City’s out of pocket costs to date and the estimated costs to restore the portion of the island damaged by the construction.”
Under the agreement, 35th North has until October to make a series of scheduled payments in the settlement. Croghan said the financial hit won’t cause 35th North to close.
Seattle Parks expects to complete the majority of the restoration effort on the island this year.