Glendale High tennis courts back in motion

City and school district officials said this week that they are negotiating a modified agreement that would allow them to break ground sometime this fall on a long-awaited renovation of the Glendale High School tennis courts.

It’s a joint-use project meant to increase recreational space available to the public.

The refurbishment of the six tennis courts will include court resurfacing, new lighting, wheelchair access, new restrooms and parking improvements. They would be available for public use weekday evenings, and all day on Saturday and Sunday, said George Balteria, a senior project manager with the community services and parks department.

The work — which is expected to last about four months — could begin mid-fall, Balteria said.

Glendale High School would relocate its tennis team for the season to the Scholl Canyon courts, Principal Deb Rinder said.

School board members had expressed concern about the price of the courts and their terms of use with the city. Mary Boger said she wanted assurances that the courts wouldn’t be tapped as a revenue source for the city.

The plans for the project were drawn up after an overhaul of the Adult Recreation Center on Colorado Street resulted in a net loss of public tennis courts for the city.

The City Council and the Glendale Unified School District reached an agreement that would make the Glendale High courts accessible to the public during certain hours. After initial approval for the project in October 2008, the district agreed to contribute $175,000, and the city was to pick up the remainder of the $900,000 tab.

But the work was delayed for roughly 18 months pending approval from the Division of the State Architect, and the price tag has since climbed to $1.1 million.

Glendale Unified school board members this week expressed concerns about the delay, saying they were unwilling to increase the district’s financial contribution to the project. They also reiterated reservations that were aired more than three years ago regarding sharing the site, saying they would like to revisit the use of permits for the courts.

“I don’t want to be in a pickle where we are going to have a tennis tournament there for our kids in the high schools and they are renting it out to some adult group,” school board member Greg Kirkorian said.


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