Rollin’ With Davis Torgerson – Minneapolis, Minnesota Skateboarding

In this 2009 video we see a few parts of downtown Minneapolis used as a street skate scape by Davis Torgerson. It is interesting to see the downtown streets, public spaces, and parking garages with few cars on what is most likely a weekend day. An empty skyway even gets transformed into a temporary skate park and a close encounter with a Metro Transit bus results in a little scare, but no injuries.

Is the presence of skateboarding in a city an indication of good urbanism and inviting design of public places?

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6 Responses to Rollin’ With Davis Torgerson – Minneapolis, Minnesota Skateboarding

  1. Obvious Oscar September 12, 2014 at 8:59 am #

    “Is the presence of skateboarding in a city an indication of good urbanism and inviting design of public places?”

    No, just an indication of over-landscaped, under-utilized, quasi-public spaces of a decidedly non-green variety, with next to no foot traffic save for the stray skate-hater here and there.

  2. Karl September 12, 2014 at 10:25 am #

    Skateboarding exists everywhere – but it’s probably a good sign if a city has skate culture. That means its neighborhoods are connected and its youth are mobile.

    My dream is for whole cities to have smooth, contiguous, skateboard-able sidewalks and sidepaths, and slow, bumpy, brick or cobblestone streets.

    • Matty Lang
      Matty Lang September 12, 2014 at 10:26 am #

      Thanks for the comment Karl. That’s more along the lines of what I was thinking.

      • Obvious Oscar September 13, 2014 at 10:10 am #

        I think skateboarding and skate culture is great, but let’s be honest: skate culture, if anything, developed as a response to terrible development patterns and a lack of connected neighborhoods. It started as a way for bored suburban white kids to wander around empty downtowns across America. It may have provided a way for disconnected youth communities to find one another, but this was a subversive adaptation to some pretty shitty urban planning. Definitely not something that can be incubated by policymakers.

        • Phil September 13, 2014 at 12:34 pm #

          Oscar, while your statement is partially true for some, my experience growing up skateboarding is quite different. I grew up in Southwest Minneapolis and skated with kids on my block, in my neighborhood, and from my neighborhood school. We’d skate spot to spot from Downtown Linden Hills, to 50th and France, and beyond. Oftentimes, we’d extend our reach by hopping on the 6 bus and explore the vast parking lots and loading docks of the Southdale area. Or we’d take the 6 other way and head downtown or to the U of M, where we’d find the best spots, and run into other skate crews from around the metro.

          Skateboarding opened my eyes up to urbanism and how we define our streets, and many of these suburban (not going to say white, because skateboarding draws a much more diverse crowd than other social activities and cliques) kids you are talking about have grown up, moved to Minneapolis, continue to skateboard, and have a real appreciation for the city around them.

          • Obvious Oscar September 15, 2014 at 1:05 am #

            I dunno, that sounds more or less about like what I described. You skated, you connected with other skaters, you explored the ruins of the shitty urban planning of decades past. What am I missing?

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