Fairfax County’s inventory of pickleball facilities has expanded with the arrival of 10 courts dedicated to the increasingly popular sport.
Newly renovated courts at Lewinsville Park in McLean and George Washington Park in Mount Vernon will officially open on Saturday, Oct. 15, the Fairfax County Park Authority announced yesterday (Thursday).
The festivities will start at 9 a.m. with a ribbon-cutting at GW Park (8426 Old Mt. Vernon Road) led by Mount Vernon District Supervisor Dan Storck. Park officials and local pickleball advocates will also make remarks, and there will be time for photos and “light refreshments,” according to the news release.
The park authority began demolition work on the GW courts this spring, one of five court renovation or maintenance projects planned for this year.
The park’s four tennis courts have been converted into six courts dedicated to pickleball and two courts that can be used by both sports. The $202,306 renovation also added new surfacing, fencing and nets.
Lewinsville Park (1659 Chain Bridge Road) will get its ribbon-cutting at 4 p.m. Expected speakers include FCPA Executive Director Jai Cole, Board Member Tim Hackman and Fairfax County Advocates for Pickleball, the release says.
Costing $650,000, the Lewinsville project resurfaced and added new fencing for all six of the park’s courts, but only one was turned into dedicated pickleball courts, a downsizing from the park authority’s original plans to repurpose two or three of the facilities.
Tennis players had argued that the county doesn’t have enough courts for their sport to cede or share that many with their pickleball-playing counterparts, a conflict that has emerged as a top challenge to the county’s efforts to add more pickleball facilities.
“The improvements align with recommendations in the recently completed Pickleball Study and are an effort to introduce a greater variety of court sports to accommodate the diverse users across the county,” the FCPA said of the Lewinsville and GW renovations. “Interest in pickleball locally and countywide is growing quickly, and the introduction of pickleball at these locations will address the need for additional facilities for this emerging sport.”
This summer, the park authority celebrated the launch of the Wakefield Park Pickleball and Tennis Complex in Annandale, a $410,000 renovation project that installed two pickleball courts and accessibility improvements.
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