Pickleball Project

CROA Board meeting – Pickleball Q & A

Wednesday, September 22, 6 p.m.

via teleconference 

Executive Summary 

The Pickleball Task Force was established by the CROA Board to work with management (CCMC or soon Grand Manors) to develop specifications for building a Pickleball Facility.

These specifications will be used by management to engage in pre-construction bids for the development of a Pickleball Facility.

The Pickleball Task Force operates in an advisory capacity to make recommendations and is not empowered to spend money or make decisions. All spending and decisions are done by the CROA Board.

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Pickleball in Celebration

Timeline:

2013 – CROA began working with Celebration residents to find a place in our community to play Pickleball (use existing tennis courts, K8 courts, North Village Pavilion, etc.)

2016 – Popularity of Pickleball in Celebration started to grow

Celebration Pickleball club was started, see Our Story

CROA became more engaged in finding a permanent solution

2019 – Celebration Facilities & Parks Master Plan Update

CROA Hired Lose Design to conduct a community wide survey with the primary objective to assisting Celebration in guiding its strategies for future improvements to the community's facilities and parks over the next ten years. To better understand how Lose Design worked with Celebration residents, see the Public Engagement Process

Pickleball ranked second among the top five requested amenities by the residents of Celebration. A Community Center was ranked first but is in a significantly higher cost category. The full report can be found here.

2020 – Meeting with the School Board to determine the possibility of converting the K8 tennis courts to Pickleball courts. Restrictions, such as, limiting court use to hours when school is not in session made location unsuitable

Jan 20 – CROA Facility Prioritization Workshop. The CROA board directed management (CCMC) to work with the Pickleball group to look at Pickleball on Lot B (between the Dog Park and the CCDD building). The video recording can be found here.

Feb – Management (CCMC) submitted a Request for Proposal (RFP) for Pickleball on Lot B

Feb / Mar – Two bids received (from Arnco Construction and McCree Construction) just prior to beginning of the COVID pandemic, as a result these bids were never explored to understand the cost components.

Aug – Due to concerns around COVID the CROA board put a freeze on Capital Expenditures until June 30, 2021.

2021

Mar – CROA board approved a new motion to obtain bids for Pickleball on Lot B (between the Dog Park and the CCDD building)

Apr – CROA board amended motion to also to include bids for Lot D (between the Athletic Field Parking and the CCDD building) and directed management to work with the Pickleball Group

May – To comply with the charter, the CROA Board suspended all Pickleball activities until an official Pickleball Task Force could be created

Jun – CROA board distributed a Community Call for Pickleball Task Force volunteers

Jun – The CROA board selects candidates to fill the 5 slots on the official Pickleball Task Force (see Agendas and Minutes below)

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Funding

Funding to build new amenities (capital projects) does NOT come from annual HOA fees.  Funding comes from an assessment that is charged every time a property is sold in Celebration (equal to an annual HOA fee) and apartment recreational fees.

ANY amenity (parking, courts, community center, etc.) placed in the civic corridor comes with a significant price tag just to survey and prep the land.

The Pickleball Task Force is recommending funding for a phased approach; 8 courts + 1 handicapped accessible court now and based on demonstrated demand growing over time. An example 8 court + 1 handicapped accessible court is shown below:


Locations for Pickleball Previously Considered and determined unsuitable:

Convert K8 courts

Using tennis courts at Lakeside

Lot behind Heritage Hall

Green Park in East Village

Island Village recreation space

North Village center corridor


Pickleball Popularity:

Based on data from USA Pickleball, in 2021:

4.2 million players in the US – 10.5% Average Annual Growth Rate

61% men, 39% women – fastest growing sector is youth/young adults

 

The Celebration Pickleball Club:

Sessions are scheduled every day of the week

With no advertising or promotion, the club has 266 members in the database (106 full time residents, 60 locals and 100 snowbirds)

During the prime season we routinely have 35 in attendance (16 playing, 19 waiting for a court)

New players have been discouraged due to the inability to have access to courts to learn

Lack of adequate lighting prevents working adults from having an evening option to play – this would likely more than double the number of participants

A permanent Pickleball Facility would enable:

Growth in participation

Scheduled group and ad-hoc play enabling beginners and social groups to play at various times

Handicapped court will provide a new recreational opportunity

Find out more about the Celebration Pickleball Club here.

Additional Information

Brian Kensil & Celia McFadden (CROA board members) have been working with Mike Jackson and Steve Northridge (Pickleball Task Force Co-Chairs)

Brian & Celia recommend a 300 ft wide x 150 ft deep section of Lot D as the location for the Pickleball courts. Lot D is between the CCDD building and the existing Athletic field parking lot and is approximately 750 ft wide x 150 ft deep.

Assuming Lot D, the issue becomes which end to put the Pickleball courts on:

Pickleball Task Force would like East end closer to the amenities (bathrooms, water, etc.)

Other groups likely prefer the West end closer to the CCDD Building

The courts could be placed in the middle of Lot D with parking on both sides

It is cost beneficial to pick the lot and location now. Then the contractors can be focused on a specific proposal and do less testing of soil samples, drainage, etc.

The requested vote from the CROA Board will be to get price estimates on various options so the Board can truly evaluate the expense and make an educated decision.

Until the Board has true cost estimates, the final placement, design and timeline cannot be determined.

Relevant Documents

Pickleball Videos

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