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Shared Tennis Courts Concept Resurfaces

St. Margaret's Episcopal Church spoke with San Juan Capistrano's Parks, Recreation and Senior Services Commission Monday.

Talk is surfacing once again of building shared public-private tennis courts in town.

At a Parks, Recreation and Senior Services Commission meeting this week, representatives fromsaid they were encouraged by Mayor Sam Allevato to present the concept—which at this stage is very preliminary.

"We are looking for a sense that this something that should be pursued … which would allow us to move forward," said the school's CFO, David Bush.

If such a proposal is seen to fruition, the courts would likely be built on city-owned property at the corner of La Novia Avenue and San Juan Creek Road. The school, whose Tartans' girls tennis team has won three CIF championship titles, needs six courts but would like eight, Bush said.

"Obviously, it could help St. Margaret's [to have the courts next to the school], I think they have to go over to to practice now," Allevato said. "They're a great school with a great tennis program."

Allevato said he was handing out awards to the tennis team in January when he realized the need for joint-use courts. The idea was floated "many years" ago, he said, before he was on the City Council (he was first seated on the dais in March 2004).

"Since that time, we've had some other surveys from the public, and there's been an interest, not only by St. Margaret's, but by members of the public to have some more tennis courts available," he said.

Some of the concerns cited by the Parks and Rec commission Monday: whether there's really an overwhelming need by the public for the courts (some are already available next to the library in downtown), disturbing neighbors; and whether the land in question is large enough to accommodate the number of courts that St. Margaret's wants.

Commissioner Ronald Denman said he thinks the shared courts would be "a terrific asset."

Allevato said it's up to St. Margaret's to give the city some type of formal proposal, "but I would only support it if it was joint-use," he said.

Judith Anderson April 23, 2011 at 12:47 AM
YES it does need more courts, we are close by La Novia & SJCrk RD and have 3 players in our family, going to the courts now next to Library. Judith Anderson

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