The first five outdoor sports fields should be revitalized

The first five of 28 outdoor tennis and basketball courts are set to be revitalized this year, affecting Delki Dozzi Sports Complex, Elmview Playground, Lorne Brady Park, Sixth Avenue Playground and Twin Playground Forks.

The city is set to revitalize the first five of 28 outdoor tennis and basketball courts this year as part of a six-year program to breathe new life into the crumbling infrastructure.

The top five include Delki Dozzi Sports Complex, Elmview Playground, Lorne Brady Park, Sixth Avenue Playground and Twin Forks Playground, 28 of which are slated for revitalization by 2027.

Their project stems from the city receiving $4.38 million in federal funding to restore outdoor recreation grounds, which city recreation manager Cindy Dent said they qualified for after that their Parks, Open Spaces and Recreation Master Plan has established it as a priority.

Before the merger, different works were carried out in different municipalities, since then it became clear that the city missed out on some infrastructure investments.

“Over time, we realized that the courts were something that really needed a major facelift in the community,” she said. “There was a priority in doing this, and we were prepared to apply for any available funding.”

The city has targeted 14 outdoor tennis courts and 14 outdoor basketball courts throughout the community to be revitalized, including renovating them into spaces for basketball, pickleball, tennis and skateboarding.

“There are definitely niche groups that are interested in each activity, and I would say demographically the community would respond to different activities,” Dent said.

A public consultation process took place this year to help determine what should be done with each space, which involved the general public and a handful of key stakeholders. This resulted in the following distribution for the first five projects of the project to be carried out this year:

  • Delki Dozzi Sports Complex: a stand-alone tennis court, two stand-alone pickleball courts, a basketball half-court and new skate park equipment
  • Elmview Playground: One stand-alone tennis court and four stand-alone pickleball courts
  • Lorne Brady Park: Two hybrid tennis/pickleball courts
  • Sixth Avenue Playground: A stand-alone tennis court, four stand-alone pickleball courts and an expanded skate park and relocation of the basketball court to the outdoor rink
  • Twin Forks Playground: Two hybrid tennis/pickleball courts and a full basketball court

Younger people tended to be interested in skate parks and basketball courts, while older people gravitated towards tennis and pickleball, Dent said.

“I think we’re trying to do something for all ages here, and also the combination of different activities in different locations really creates a vibrant level of activity in each neighborhood,” she said.

“I’m really excited to see how this will transform people’s outdoor activity in each of the areas we’re going to revitalize.”

For the uninitiated, pickleball is a newly popular sport and is a cross between tennis, badminton and table tennis. It is played with a paddle and a wiffle ball on a field much smaller than a tennis court. There are currently a handful of courts available in Greater Sudbury and equipment available for loan at some Greater Sudbury public libraries.

“It’s definitely an easy-to-learn racquet sport,” Dent said, adding that it’s not as technically ornorus as tennis, so it’s able to appeal to a wider range of ages and skill levels. ability.

Although excited to hear that Elmview Playground at The Valley will be revitalized this year and retain one of its tennis courts, local tennis player Lise Watt told Sudbury.com that it’s a shame that the only tennis court in the area could deteriorate as it did.

“We’re playing on totally uneven pavement,” she said. “There is literally grass growing through the cracks everywhere.”

He’s been “sitting there for years like this,” Watt said, adding that she joined friends to drive into town three times a week to play tennis. She hopes the city will put Elmview Playground at the top of this year’s list of projects.

With five of the 28 outdoor courts to be taken over this year, the remaining 23 courts are expected to be completed in five annual phases ending in 2027.

Tyler Clarke covers city hall and political affairs for Sudbury.com.

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