Tennis Industry magazine


Hard Hitting

Meet 10 great examples of outdoor hard-court construction excellence.

By Peter Francesconi

There were 10 outdoor hard-court winners of the Racquet Sports Industry/American Sports Builders Association 2009 Distinguished Facility-of-the-Year Awards, the largest crop of hard-court winners in some time. Six of the winning projects were new construction, while four were upgrades of existing facilities, although some of the upgrades involved total demolition of existing courts.

Maybe pointing out the desire for communities and schools to offer tennis to residents and students, six of these projects were at high schools or colleges (including one private school) and two were at public parks. The other two projects were at resorts. More and more, the construction industry appears to be going green in that old court material is being processed for re-use in the sub-base material of the new construction.

Nearly every site included player seating and spectator viewing areas, particularly for the school and college projects. Fordson High School in Michigan, located in a residential neighborhood, was an upgrade of the facilities and had to be done on a tight schedule, right after the tennis season. The new construction at West Morris Mendham High School in New Jersey had to deal with a 22-foot elevation difference from one end of the site to the other. Construction at the private Blair Academy in New Jersey recycled the crushed material from the old courts for use in the base of the new courts.

At Pacific University in Oregon, the six courts were built quickly and efficiently by coordinating excavation equipment and crews already doing work on campus with the court contractor. Three of the six new Pacific courts were later covered with a metal structure for play in inclement weather. For the upgrade at Penn State Abington, a free-floating cushioned surface was installed over the existing cracked asphalt courts, after patching and prepping. The 12 courts at Washington State University are in a unique “amphitheater” created when the site was sculpted for the tennis center, which shields the courts from wind and offers students a place to relax and watch the action.

The six new courts at the public Bennett Park in Missouri offer player seating and shade between courts, along with spectator viewing areas. The upgrade at Mountain View Tennis Center in Phoenix saw the installation of three post-tension concrete courts, but not without numerous delays and rescheduling of the concrete pouring by city officials.

The upgrade to the six courts at The Broadmoor in Colorado included two new post-tension concrete courts, resurfacing two other courts with the same cushioned surface and also designing and building two rooftop sub-irrigated clay courts. An air structure was placed over two of the hard courts. Construction at the Four Seasons Resort & Club in Texas included renovating three courts and building one new court, on a post-tension concrete slab. The oversized new court (130 by 70 feet) was designed for possible future exhibition matches, with room for portable bleachers and linesmen.

For details on the 2010 Outstanding Facility-of-the-Year Awards, contact the ASBA at 866-501-ASBA or, or visit

Fordson High School, Dearborn, Mich.

(Nominated by Foresite Design Inc., Berkley, Mich.)

Architect/Engineer: Foresite Design Inc.

Specialty Contractor: The CourtSmiths

No. of Courts: 8

Surface: Star Trac Enterprise

Acrylic: Plexipave

Nets, Posts: Edwards

Drain: ACO Sport

Bennett Park

Bennett Park, Liberty, Mo.

(Nominated by McConnell & Associates Corp., North Kansas City, Mo.)

General Contractor: McConnell & Associates

No. of Courts: 6

Surface: California Products DecoTurf

Nets, Posts, Windscreen: Douglas Industries

Blair Academy

Blair Academy, Blairstown, N.J.

(Nominated by Sasaki Associates Inc., Watertown, Mass.)

Architect/Engineer: Sasaki Associates Inc.

No. of Courts: 10

Surface: Nova Sports USA

Lighting: LSI Courtsider XL

Nets, Posts, Center Anchors: Douglas Industries

The Broadmoor

The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, Colo.

(Nominated by Renner Sports Surfaces, Denver, Colo.)

Specialty Contractor: Renner Sports Surfaces

No. of Courts: 6

Nets, Posts, Windscreen, Center Straps, Anchors: Douglas Industries

The Four Seasons

Four Seasons Resort and Club, Irving, Texas

(Nominated by Mid-American Courtworks, Wichita, Kan.)

Architect/Engineer: HKS Architect

General Contractor: Spring Valley Contractors

Specialty Contractor: Mid-American Courtworks

No. of Courts: 1

Surface: Advantage Sports Surface System (Vance Bros.)

Lighting: Techlight Sports Lighting

Nets, Windscreen: Douglas Industries

Mountain View

Mountain View Tennis Center, Phoenix, Ariz.

(Nominated by General Acrylics Inc., Phoenix, Ariz.)

Specialty Contractor: General Acrylics

No. of Courts: 3

Surface: Gameco Acrylic, General Acrylics

Nets, Posts, Windscreen: Douglas Industries

Pacific University

Pacific University, Forest Grove, Ore.

(Nominated by Atlas Track & Tennis, Tualatin, Ore.)

Architect/Engineer: KPFF Consulting Engineer

General Contractor: Lease Crutcher Lewis Builds LLC

Specialty Contractor: Atlas Track & Tennis

No. of Courts: 6

Surface: Plexipave

Lighting: LSI Courtsider Aero System

Nets, Center Straps: Douglas Industries

Fencing: Atlas Track & Tennis

Penn State Abington

Penn State Abington, Abington, Pa.

(Nominated by Pro-Sport Construction Inc, Berwin, Pa.)

No. of Courts: 4

Surface: NGI Sports

Acrylics: Laykold

Nets, Posts, Windscreen, Padding: J.A. Cissel

Washington State University

Washington State University, Pullman Wash.

(Nominated by Global Sports & Tennis Design Group LLC, Fair Haven, N.J.)

Architect/Engineer: KPFF Consulting Engineers

Design Consultant: Global Sports & Tennis Design Group

General Contractor: Lydig Construction

Specialty Contractor: Escent

No. of Courts: 12

Surface: Plexipave, Atlas Track & Tennis

Fencing: Idaho Fence, Master Halco

Lighting: Musco

Trench Drains: ACO

West Morris Mendham HS

West Morris Mendham H.S., Mendham, N.J.

(Nominated by Halecon Inc., Bridgewater, N.J.)

General/Specialty Contractor: Halecon Inc.

No. of Courts: 6

Surface: Halecon Inc.

Color Coating: California Products

Hardware, Windscreen: J.A. Cissel

Drain: Sportsfield Specialties

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About the Author

Peter Francesconi is editorial director of Tennis Industry magazine.



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