outdoor School Board courts « VanPubTennis

By: Vancouver Public Tennis  09-12-2011
Keywords: Tennis, school board, courts

Public indoor tennis at the Killarney location at 49th Avenue and Kerr would work very well for many Vancouverites. It is already a destination for recreation seekers who wish to swim, skate, or use the community centre fitness area and gym. There is much parking space around the complex. The number 49 and 26 buses service the location via 49th Ave and Kerr St respectively. And it’s not a bad destination to cycle to from anywhere near the long (41st Ave) ridge running east-west.

There are four tennis courts on the school grounds, between the community ice rink and the school. Unfortunately, of the sites under consideration, the courts here are the tiniest, with a runback of only 14 ft. That is to say there is only 14 feet from the back of the baseline to the fence. A runback of 21 ft is generally considered minimum for tournament play, 18 ft for recreational play involving players beyond a beginner’s level of skill. It should be the minimum for a facility where the broad public are charged money to play. Looking at the aerial view of these courts, it appears there is room to add an edge of asphalt on the north side sufficient to make runback of at least 18 ft. If the extra needed could only be got by crossing over the property line between VSB and VPB, might that throw a spanner into the bureaucratic works? Hmmmmn. Lets hope not.

The trick to making a pilot project work here is cooperation between the city’s two monster bureaucracies, the Vancouver School Board and the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation. Were it just you, dear reader, as the Vancouver School Board, and I, as the Vancouver Park Board, we could arrange this over coffee. “Yes, your students will get designated time on court, in return for your kind loan of the courts to be covered and rented out by our community centre. Bless us all!” But you and I do not have oodles of departments, committees, and collective bargaining agreements demanding compliance of every new wrinkle in the status quo. 

In this case, the configuration of the nearby buildings is not ideal. The nearest building to the courts is the high school. During the stormy days of winter, access to school water fountains and washrooms would be best for tennis players, giving them the least distance to walk through the rain. But the school may not wish to allow access during the evening and on weekends. The next nearest building is the skating rink. Well, perhaps there is a near door that tennis players could use to access washrooms and change rooms in that building. Were it necessary to walk around outside the rink to the community centre for change rooms and washrooms, it would mean a walk through the rain of over a hundred metres. Hopefully, the two great bureaucracies could work things out so that such a trek was not necessary.

Certainly, to this observer, it seems a very attractive proposition to have a pool and community centre next door to a tennis facility. Vanpub likes this site. 

Give us your opinions…leave a comment.

Keywords: courts, indoor tennis, school board, Tennis, Tennis Courts, Tennis Players

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