Tennis courts

The debate continues over the renovation of the tennis courts at Manistee’s Sands Park


MANISTEE – The debate will continue over what to do with the Sands Park tennis courts in Manistee.

No decision was made on whether to restore or remove the Sands Park tennis courts at the Sands Park Board of Control meeting on Monday.

One thing has been made relatively clear however, it would be more cost effective to remove the tennis courts than to renovate them.

Jeff Mikula, director of Manistee’s public works department, said it would cost about $9,000 to remove them. It would cost over four to five times as much to replace or restore them.

“So probably over the last 14 years I’ve personally been working to try to modernize these tennis courts in Sands Park – in my previous capacity as the town’s official engineer and then also since being employed by town,” Mikula said. “During this period, three different engineering companies have reviewed tennis courts, including Wade Trim, Abonmarche and more recently (the) Spicer Group, and all were of the opinion that the cost of surfacing tennis courts is between $40,000 and $50,000 and that the life of this repair would be very, very short due to the basic conditions.”

However, others at the meeting, including City Manager William Gambill and Sands Park Control Board member Jermaine Sullivan, said they still wanted to explore the possibility of repurposing the tennis courts or finding a lower price. to that of the previous companies mentioned by Mikula.

Gambill said that while it remains possible to save the courts, he would like to look into other companies that may have a different opinion. He said that when he was city manager of St. Clair Shores, he worked with some companies to resurface tennis courts and was able to get a more reasonable estimate.

“At the place where I worked, we redid some land and it was just a bit of these cracks. It was like (a) duct tape and epoxy (work). I’m pretty sure it wasn’t. It wasn’t that expensive and I think it was maybe worth a look,” Gambill said.

Another suggestion would be to turn tennis courts into pickleball courts, which have become very popular in Manistee County and across the country.

Another meeting on the Sands Park tennis courts will take place towards the end of the year – after Gambill researched offers to resurface the courts.

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