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At the end of a run-down road in an upper-middle class town, the noise of skateboards on concrete and laughing young men rings out from a dilapidated country club – once the domain of the fashionable and well-to-do.For more than seven years the group of friends has been working to turn the erstwhile sport and leisure spot into a skate park, foraging for materials to build ramps and obstacles and placing them around the club's open spaces.The skaters' self-made paradise has repeatedly been made inaccessible to them by the local municipality, including during Lebanon's waste crisis in 2015, when the municipality turned the underground basketball court-cum-skate park into a waste-sorting plant.Since the underground skate park's closure, most of the shredding has taken place around a vast empty swimming pool.Besides the pool/skate park, Ghorra has also put Charmland's vacant chalets to work as an improvised sanctuary for stray dogs that he says would otherwise be poisoned or shot by municipal order.I was shaped because of this," Akl said.Asked why they put so much effort into a place that could be taken away from them by a court decision at any moment, Akl turned thoughtful.
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