A designer, architect and skateboarder walk into a bar...

Wired recently did a profile on a company called California Skateparks—comprised of architects, designers, and skateboarders alike—explaining the balance of play, difficulty, and art that a good skatepark requires. 

Every park that California Skateparks builds has certain fundamental features, like ledges, banked turns and a transitional element such as a bowl or quarter pipe. Ledges are specifically important because they’re a feature that serves both beginners and professionals equally. “We try to accommodate all ages, all types of skaters, and all levels of ability,” he says. Wide, flat plazas are particularly good at accommodating a variety of skill levels. Then, Carter says, “If budget and space allow, we always try to do some sort of unique feature. Sometimes [that feature] just ends up being the entire park, or the aesthetic detailing that takes place throughout the park.”