Tennis Industry magazine

 

Building a Business

Certified Tennis Court Builders — or CTCBs — are becoming more and more important in the construction field.

By Mary Helen Sprecher

Certified Tennis Court Builders — or CTCBs — are becoming more and more important in the construction field.

The search for a contractor to build, rehab or just repair a tennis court can be worrisome. After all, the court needs to look and play the way it should. It needs to hold up to constant foot traffic, withstand the weather and with any luck, not develop major problems that will translate into headaches for the pro.

Problem is, a lot of contractors (those who build sports facilities and those who build other structures) are selected because their bid came in lowest. But does that really translate into a company that is skilled in putting in a tennis court?

Those who want an extra tool in selecting a contractor might be able to use as precedent a recent ruling by the Attorney General of Massachusetts. The ruling allowed a local high school district to choose not just the company with the low bid, but the one that was judged to have the expertise to build an athletic facility.

court construction

In its In Re: Masconoment Regional School District Running Track Resurfacing (decision issued Aug. 8, 2008), the Office of the AG upheld the right of a local school district to mandate in its bid requirement that the bidder for a running track project employ an individual with the Certified Track Builder, or CTB, designation. The designation is offered as part of the certification program of the American Sports Builders Association. Another requirement was that the winning bidder be a member in good standing of the ASBA.

While this ruling involved a track construction project, the ASBA also issues a Certified Tennis Court Builder, or CTCB, designation. Many in the industry believe the same ruling would apply on the tennis side, too.

According to George Todd Jr., CTCB and chairman of the ASBA, the ruling is a landmark not only for ASBA and its certification program, but for those who are having facilities built or renovated, and who want the best for the athletes who will be using those facilities.

Both certified builder programs were developed by the ASBA in order to help raise professional standards and improve the practice of sports facility construction. In order to become a certified builder, an individual must meet specific criteria set forth by the ASBA; he or she must complete an application that shows he or she has a set amount of construction experience in the building of either tennis courts or running tracks, and then pass a comprehensive exam on either tennis court or running track construction. In order to retain the designation, an individual must recertify every three years by documenting a sufficient level of continuing education activities in the relevant field or by passing the examination again.

Those who are interested in hiring a tennis court contractor are always advised to do their homework: Check references, ask about professional affiliations and certifications, and look for a company that is licensed, insured and has a good reputation. While it’s impossible to eliminate all the uncertainty, it is possible to be proactive, and to bring peace of mind to the process.

Choosing a Contractor

Building or improving a tennis court? While there’s no foolproof way to find the perfect partner, these suggestions can help you narrow the field:

Certified Tennis Court Builders

These 46 court contractors have earned the right to put the “CTCB” designation after their names by demonstrating their expertise through their experience in the field and by passing rigorous exams.

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About the Author

Mary Helen Sprecher  is the managing editor of Sports Destinations Management Magazine, a niche business-to-business publication for planners of sports travel events, in addition to being an RSI Contributing Editor. She is the technical writer for the American Sports Builders Association and works as a newspaper reporter in Baltimore City.

 

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