OP Pickleball Courts To Be Repaired

OCEAN PINES – The association’s board this week voted to approve a $55,000 purchase request to repair several pickleball courts.

On Wednesday, the Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors voted unanimously to authorize a purchase request in the amount of $55,260 to repair cracks in the association’s pickleball courts. General Manager John Viola said staff was recommending the association use ATC Corporation – the company charged with constructing new courts at the Ocean Pines Racquet Center – to complete the work.

“We received back two bids as well as several contractors who opted not to bid because they couldn’t because of costs, the environment, COVID, lack of labor …,” he told the board. “I do have a bid from the contractor. The staff recommended the same one that’s doing the new courts.”

Viola said it was recently brought to his attention by members of the pickleball community that cracks in some of the pickleball courts had spread. He said the cracks had become a safety issue.

“There’s two in the back, which turns out to be eight pickleball courts, and then there’s two in front of that we call the tennis ball courts …,” he said, “there are cracks there, cracks that definitely from a safety side have gotten bigger.”

Viola said those pickleball courts would have to be shut down in order to make the necessary repairs. As a result, he said he and Recreation and Parks Director Debbie Donahue were working with the pickleball community.

“I’ve spoken to the leaders of pickleball, went through everything we are going to do there, and they are in agreement with it,” he said.

Association President Colette Horn questioned if the purchase request was an unbudgeted item. Viola said it was.

“It’s not in this year’s budget, nor next year’s,” he replied. “What I’m requesting is that we pay for this kind of like how we did the T-docks last year. We ordered them and said once we realize at the end of the year the favorability, we’ll use that to pay for the T-docks. We allocated that at the end of the year. I’m asking for the same here.”

With no further questions, the board voted unanimously to approve the purchase request.

In addition to repairs at the pickleball complex, Viola said the association would soon begin site work for the new pickleball courts.

Last month, the association’s board approved a $175,244 contract with ATC Corporation for the construction of new pickleball courts. The company’s bid, which includes the construction of courts and fencing, does not include site work, which will be completed in house at a total of $40,000.

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.