The state and the Charles River Conservancy hope to have the fabled Charles River Skatepark under a loop ramp to the Zakim Bridge built by December of next year.
Backers, using Big Dig mitigation funds and private donations, have made similar promises in the past, but this time the state Department of Conservation and Recreation is backing that schedule up with a formal request for bids from companies that want to run and maintain the skate park for five years.
Although the initial concept is to open the park for free use, with no staffing, the bid request asks potential operators to look at ways to recoup costs through such possible revenue sources as "user fees, season passes, food and merchandise concessions, promotion events, and advertisement opportunities" and to propose a cost for having staff on hand May 1 through Oct. 15.
The bid request also asks prospective operators to provide a cost estimate for maintaining restrooms that the state has no initial plans to install but for which it is reserving some room, just in case.
People who have always wanted to run a skate park have until Sept. 23 to submit a bid.