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Legendary Virgil Abloh’s skatepark in Accra closed down two years after opening

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The Freedom Skatepark, Ghana’s first skatepark, was reportedly forced to go down two years after it opened.

According to complex.com, the late American-born Ghanaian fashion designer and entrepreneur Virgil Abloh’s Freedom Skatepark has been shuttered owing to issues from “outside contractors.”

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The accusation was based on a social media post published by Wole Olosunde, a designer and native New Yorker, who claimed that a contractor constructed a cement wall to keep skaters out of Abloh’s Freedom Skate Park.

“Finally got to visit FREEDOM, the skate park Virgil Abloh built in Accra, Ghana. One of his last projects before he passed. I left heartbroken and confused. Cause why tf is no one talking about or fighting for this?” he wrote on Instagram.

The New York-based designer questioned why anybody would demolish the park, which had become a haven for many Ghanaian skaters.

He alleged that it was a business owner who “built a cement wall then poured sand through the park to keep all skaters out” almost a year ago.

“It has been like this for almost a full year, leaving these kids with nowhere to skate. To the point they built their own temporary skate park to be able to keep spreading the love of skating and building community.”

Olosunde questioned why officials and the public had remained silent about the park’s shutdown, which the late Virgil Abloh spent a lot of money to develop.

GhanaWeb reported in May 2023 that the park, which was one of the few locations visited by US Vice President Kamala Harris during her official visit to Ghana in March 2023, had been closed permanently.

According to a message by a verified profile on Twitter, BlacVolta, the park was closed owing to a property dispute.

“Accra’s first community-built skateboard park, Freedom Skatepark has been closed indefinitely due to a land dispute that has put the park’s future in jeopardy.

“The dispute arose after a party claimed ownership of the land where the skatepark is located and allegedly started building a wall to block access to the site without notice or explanation,” the tweet said.

The tweet went on to say that the park’s owner had to resort to social media to ask for advice on how to keep his park secure from human incursion.

“The owner of Freedom Skatepark, @Rooky_Rider, took to Instagram to call for help from the community, asking for contacts to help save the skatepark, as well as ratings on Google and donations to pay for legal fees.

“The closure of the park has caused concern among skateboarders and the local community, who see the park as an important space for youth engagement and healthy activity,” it added.

Another tweet, according to Rightify Ghana, displayed a TV3 news clip in which it was alleged that this facility was besieged by an anti-LGBTQ+ organization, stating that it has been “disguised in the name of skating” but acts as a headquarters for Ghana’s homosexual population.

The anti-gay group, known as the Islamic Youth for Peace, has also requested that police raid the Shiashie venue.

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