As one of the world's most religiously diverse nations, according to the Pew Research Center, Singapore's population consists of predominantly Chinese, Malay and Indian ethnic groups as well a large circle of expatriates—a mix that's consistently reflected at the skate park.
On any given day, skaters from various age groups and backgrounds can be seen practicing tricks, cheered on by a crowd of bystanders-some of whom skate, others who simply hang out at the park for the "good vibes."
"There have always been a mix of cultures at the park but everyone is cool with one another, there are always positive energies. I've never seen any nasty things go down," said Tan Lepham, a skateboard instructor and founder of Por Vida Skateboarding.
Tan, who's been a regular at the park ever since it was built, notes that the zone is home to a range of communities. "Graffiti artists, break-dancers, bikers, and rollerbladers all hang out there too," he pointed out, noting that skateboarding's carefree lifestyle is a big draw to those who don't practice the sport.
As one of the most densely populated countries in the world, Singapore has limited street space for skaters to perfect their skills, underlining the need for specialized zones. Since the National Youth Council (NYC) Skate Park was shuttered in 2004, the Somerset Skate Park became the de-facto spot for the new and experienced to hone their craft when it opened two years later. A second skate park was opened in 2009 on the eastern side of the island to meet rising demand.