HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

A non-virus story: Pickleball bid awarded

Written March 17th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

The two remaining nets may be torn, but you could still play there on March 16.

Take a last look at the long-neglected tennis courts at Linn-Benton Community College. The four courts are about to be demolished and rebuilt as 12 courts for pickleball.

Last week, the Albany City Council awarded a $329,888 contract for the pickleball project to North Santiam Paving, of Stayton, which submitted the lowest of three bids.

This follows an agreement last summer between Albany and LBCC under which the city would pay for design and construction, the courts would be available for college and public use, and the college would pay for routine maintenance henceforth.

The college has had the tennis court for decades, but in recent years they didn’t get much attention or use. Because of a growing interest in pickleball as a recreational and competitive sport, with an active group of Albany players, the deal was recommended to the council by Ed Hodney, the parks director who has since retired.

Besides the 12 pickleball courts, project drawings show the lines of one tennis court partially overlapping four of the smaller playing areas. There are to be in-ground sleeves to hold the posts for the tennis net, flush with the surface so the tennis posts can be removed.

The plans  also show one basketball post, backboard and hoop on the north side of the complex.

I took the bike to the campus Monday for a last look at the tennis courts. Demolition, obviously, had not begun. The city website shows that a building permit (assuming one is necessary) has not yet been filed or approved. The contract documents available online show that the construction is supposed to be completed by July 17, 2020.

No word on whether the coronavirus outbreak will affect the project or its schedule. I was hoping this little story could be finished without even mentioning this all-consuming mess, but it was not to be. (hh)



9 responses to “A non-virus story: Pickleball bid awarded”

  1. Jim Engel says:

    In my day we “played” in the streets in Portland!

  2. BV says:

    Glad to hear the courts will finally get some use. Pickleball has become a huge sport Worldwide. It’s great fun and great exercise.

  3. J. Johnson says:

    When Hasso writes, “the deal was recommended to the council by Ed Hodney, the parks director who has since retired,” is the author implying something might have been amiss regarding the former parks director and the project under discussion?

  4. hj.anony1 says:

    Good time for some good ol’ Socialism!

    No tongue. No cheek. No pressure!

  5. Birdiekenn says:

    329,000.00 is just another drop in the bucket, another project that will never pencil out. Wants vs needs and we are spending on wants when we need? What’s next the old, “we need more taxes or we will have to lay off police and fire? In 10 years will people still be playing pickleball, seems about as popular as shuffleboard. Let the pickleballer raise the money for their own courts.

  6. Man says:

    To bad they are leaving the school in charge of maintenance. Take a look around that place and you will see that they are not capable of properly maintaining it. If not properly maintained use will go down and soon will look just like the tennis courts.

 

 
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