Email signup

Barton Hill residents worry demand for pickleball courts will overwhelm parking

The Barton Hill tennis courts in Reston (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Reston Association is approaching a crossroads in its project to convert tennis courts at Barton Hill into pickleball courts.

The organization is now considering two potential designs for the facility at 1901 Barton Hill Road. One would replace two of the four existing tennis courts with 10 pickleball courts, including six dedicated courts and four with “blended lines” that could be shared with tennis players. The other would have four pickleball courts, all of them dedicated to the trendy sport.

Presented at a community meeting on Sept. 6, the second option was developed in response to noise concerns raised by community members in March, RA staff said.

However, Barton Hill residents remain skeptical of even the scaled-down proposal, according to a memo sent last week to RA and the Virginia Department of Transportation.

In addition to calling for advanced sound testing, residents say the courts lack “sufficient parking to accommodate the expected high demand” for pickleball. There are currently nine parking spaces for the tennis courts, including one ADA space, falling short of Fairfax County’s new two-spaces-per-court minimum requirement.

There are an additional 19 spaces on site to support the nearby soccer field, according to Bill Rountree, who wrote the letter as the self-identified “Barton Hill community spokesman.”

“It is our position that these are dedicated to soccer and may not be used to comply with County regulations,” Rountree wrote. “RA has no authority to declare such in the absence of a County determination.”

A pickleball study that the Fairfax County Park Authority finalized in December 2021 went even further with its parking guidelines, recommending that one space be provided per player.

According to the letter, residents estimate that the proposed courts could draw as many as 40 players at a time, based on the reported usage of the four pickleball courts at Autumnwood, which currently has the only dedicated pickleball facilities in Reston.

“In light of this, we strongly urge RA to consider implementing an appointment reservation system to manage the parking situation effectively,” Rountree said.

A requested crosswalk on Barton Hill Road at Sunrise Valley Drive could further aggravate the situation, the letter said, citing a county prohibition on parking within 20 feet of a crosswalk.

On behalf of the community, Rountree expressed overall support for adding a crosswalk, which residents hope will address safety issues at that intersection. RA staff have submitted a request to VDOT asking it to review the proposed crosswalk.

“RA’s proactive steps to seek the installation of a crosswalk in anticipation of increased traffic due to pickleball are laudable and prudent,” Rountree wrote.

VDOT didn’t have the status of the review on hand, but a spokesperson said the department’s “traffic engineering group always reviews every request for enhancements within our transportation system.”

When asked for comment, RA Chief Operating Officer Peter Lusk said the Board of Directors will consider the letter as part of a discussion on the Barton Hill courts project at its meeting tomorrow (Thursday).

The discussion will presumably also include consideration of feedback from residents who’ve expressed support for adding pickleball courts at Barton Hill.

In an email to the board, four RA members who signed up to speak at tomorrow’s meeting advocated for the initial design with six dedicated pickleball courts, arguing that the renovation shouldn’t include blended lines for pickleball.

“Should the Board elect to move forward with the less attractive establishment of only four (4) dedicated pickleball courts, we ask that the remaining Barton Hill court surface design allow for the potential option for adding up to two courts in the future,” the Reston residents wrote. “The unused surface area could be utilized now for players’ gathering within the fenced access area.”

If the board of directors decides to advance the project to the Design Review Board for its evaluation and approval, the process would take about 35 days, according to RA.

“The Reston Board of Directors is scheduled to discuss the Barton Hill courts project tomorrow night and provide direction to staff regarding next steps,” Lusk said.

Recent Stories

Good Friday evening, Fairfax County. Let’s take a look back at today’s stories and a look forward to tomorrow’s event calendar. 🕗 News recap The following articles were published earlier…

A new Burlington store is set to open in Mount Vernon Plaza this summer, according to a spokesperson for Federal Realty. The discount retailer, formerly known as Burlington Coat Factory,…

A home-based golf instruction facility is coming soon to a half-acre of land on 1051 Kelso Road in Great Falls. Next Level Golf — a local golf instruction company —…

Spring is a magical time and Live Fairfax has a list of exciting things to experience around the area this spring!

There’s a reason Well-Paid Maids has hundreds of positive reviews from happy clients in the D.C. area.

The home cleaning company pays cleaners — who are W-2 employees — a living wage starting at $24 an hour. Plus, cleaners are offered benefits, including insurance, 24 paid days off a year, 100% employer-paid commuting costs and more.

Lexi Grant, an operations manager at Well-Paid Maids, said it best: “People deserve their work to be respected and recognized. When that happens, you love what you do, and you create the best results.”

Read More

Submit your own Community Post here.

Are you feeling overwhelmed by life’s challenges? Do stress and anxiety seem to dominate your thoughts? At Peaceful Mind Solutions, we understand that navigating mental health can be daunting, but you don’t have to do it alone.

Our team of compassionate therapists is here to guide you on your journey toward inner peace and emotional well-being. With a client-centered approach, we tailor our therapy sessions to meet your unique needs and goals. Whether you’re struggling with depression, coping with trauma, or simply seeking personal growth, we provide a safe and supportive space for healing and growth.

Embark on a path of self-discovery with our comprehensive range of therapy services, including cognitive-behavioral therapy, mindfulness practices, and holistic approaches. Our experienced therapists are dedicated to helping you cultivate resilience, develop coping skills, and foster a greater sense of self-awareness.

Read More

Submit your own Community Post here.

Ravel Dance Company presents The Sleeping Beauty at Capital One…

Be transported to the magical kingdom of Princess Aurora, where the wicked Carabosse casts a curse that dooms the Princess and her entire kingdom. Set to the spectacular Tchaikovsky score, this beloved classic will sweep you away with its beauty,

Active Bystander: Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (TECC) Training

The Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (TECC) Active Bystander Certification course, also known as Active Bystander, is the premier training program to prepare civilians for how to respond during an intentional violent event and to address life-threatening emergencies.

Similar to FEMA’s

×

Subscribe to our mailing list