By Jennifer Grimes

Triplicate staff writer

The future Crescent City skateboard park now has someone to design it.

Wormhoudt Landscape Architecture Inc. was hired this week by the Del Norte County Board of Supervisors to plan how the 20,000-square-foot park will be laid out.

Firm president Zachary Worm-houdt visited the site in Peterson Park Wednesday and met with several skateboarders and members of the skateboard park committee.

andquot;We did the first of a series of public workshops. They actually worked with modeling clay and pencil and paper in some cases to show me the type of design they wanted,andquot; Wormhoudt said.

Those ideas and draft designs will be taken to the drawing board and incorporated into the final park design.

Wormhoudt will bring that design back to the skatepark committee in six to eight weeks, he said, to get final approval.

He said the skateable area in the park will encompass about 15,000 square feet, leaving a surrounding 5,000 square feet for benches and landscaping.

Longtime leader of the skateboard park committee Kathy Stephens was not available for comment yesterday.

Stephens said in recent interviews that getting this close to the actual design and building of the park is exciting after the group's five-year struggle to get local government support for the project.

The Wormhoudt firm has designed 40 other skateboard parks including two in the Santa Cruz area, the Arcata park and the park in Bend, Ore. The company is based in Santa Cruz.

No timeline for community meetings with the firm has been set. County officials said a public announcement of the meeting dates will be published at least one week in advance.

The new park will be located immediately behind the Del Norte County Sheriff's Office. According to a news release, parking will be available on the roadside next to the park and the Crescent City bus system Redwood Coast Transit will stop less than two blocks from the park.

To learn more about the Wormhoudt firm, access their Web site at www.skateparks.com2001.