As far as we know, this is the highest skateboard park ever created and definitely one of the more bizarre, it being on the 23rd floor of a Chicago high-rise.
In an attempt to do something never done before, Red Bull rented the entire 23rd floor of an office building for the month of November and transformed it into a skateboard park like none other, fully equipped with office furniture and even office workers.
The Red Bull Daily Grind then invited professional skateboarders Ryan Sheckler, Felipe Gustavo, Alex Midler, and Corbin Harris, among others, to give it a try. The result was a 3 1/2-minute video about a different sort of 9-to-5:
We assume they got plenty of funny looks on the way into and out of the building.
"When Felipe and I got here this morning and walked into the lobby … it was unreal, marble everywhere, and it was just super business, and here we were just walking in with skateboards and tattoos," Sheckler said. "It's just kinda funny. We went up the elevator, and got off on the 23rd floor and it was just insane. Insane. It was a full skatepark high in the sky."
"It’s a really fancy building, like, you’d never expect a skatepark to be here up on the 23rd floor. Like you come in from outside after seeing the building, and you’re like, ‘Really?!’ I was pretty impressed," added Felipe Gustavo.
And this from Alex Midler: "It was crazy to think that they would let skateboarders into one of the nicest buildings in Chicago. Usually we get kicked out of places and aren't allowed to be there, but this place welcomed us with open arms."
Course designer Mike Roebke said they wanted to do something creative that had never been done before, and they succeeded. It took 10 days to transform the office features into skateable terrain, some of it done in Roebke's warehouse in Milwaukee.
"One of the biggest challenges was getting all of the materials into the space through the service elevator," Roebke said. "You have to worm your way through with all of these materials so we had to plan ahead to make sure all the materials would fit through the space. The one thing that almost didn’t get through was the flat rail on the desks (the bump to flat bar)."
The one-month venture didn't disturb other tenants. The floor below was a maintenance floor and the tenants above were "really excited about what was going on," having never seen anything like it in their building before.
"Putting these grungy skateboarders into a corporate office setting is pretty ironic," Roebke said. "Everything tells you that these types of guys don't belong in a fancy office, but we created something that allowed them to feel comfortable and do what they love."
Photos courtesy of the Red Bull Photo Pool
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