HomeCity Government NewsCity Picks Discovery Park for Pickleball Play

City Picks Discovery Park for Pickleball Play

First published in the Feb. 17 print issue of the Outlook Valley Sun.

Pickleball, the sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and table tennis, is officially here to stay in La Cañada Flintridge with the City Council approving the designation of Mayors’ Discovery Park as a permanent location to play the sport in a virtual meeting Tuesday.
The panel voted unanimously, 5-0, supporting the Parks and Recreation Committee’s recommendation to have pickleball courts created at the park and asked staff to move forward with the project as soon as possible.
“I think it’s clear there’s a need,” said Mayor Pro Tem Keith Eich. “I think we should start making progress on making it happen.”
Arabo Parseghian, the city’s division manager, told the council that a request for a proposal can be done by next month to jumpstart the process and estimates that the park will have courts ready and open in about 18 months.
City staff presented three layout options — one with two courts, another with three and the most spacious one with four. The city was recently granted money from the state and plans on using $116,250 of it to go toward the pickleball courts.
Though the two-court option is least expensive at $280,000, the council directed city staff to plan for four courts — which is estimated to cost $500,000, of which the city would fund $383,750 — to save costs on design. Before the project goes into construction, the council will decide the final number of courts to create at the park.
Parseghian added there will be perimeter fencing around the entirety of the courts and lights that shut off automatically at a specific time to avoid park use during late hours.
Councilman Rick Gunter was supportive of city staff’s plans but expressed concern about the impact four courts would have on the park’s use, making the site single purpose.
“If we do all four, the park would then become single purpose,” he said. “For as limited park space is in our town, I’d like very much if we can figure out how we would have a park space that doesn’t do just one thing, realizing that four is better for pickleball but, also, we are residents that are short on everything. … We just need all kinds of space trade.”
Pickleball enthusiasts weren’t the only ones who wrote to the council supporting the decision to make Mayors’ Discovery Park their official site to play the game they enjoy. Residents living near the Glenhaven Park tennis court — a site where the city began a pilot pickleball program last April — also asked the council to create new courts because of the noise and congestion brought on by the sport.
Sergio Mendoza Jr. wrote to the council that his lifestyle and study habits changed because of the noise caused by pickleball, and his father also submitted a comment claiming that he now has tinnitus as a result of the sport being played near his home.
The council had extended the pilot program in November but it is set to expire next month. City staff said it would include the item in the agenda of the next meeting, which will not be until March 15, and the council will then determine what to do with the pilot program.


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