Shorewood Secures Support for New Lake Bluff Tennis Courts, Project Planned for Summer 2016
A combination of Shorewood community organizations and individual donors have reached the fundraising goal to support the installation of two new tennis courts at Lake Bluff Elementary School. On July 15, the Shorewood School District received a grant from the Shorewood Foundation, which provided the final funds needed to meet the project goal.
The new tennis courts will be located on the northeast part of the Lake Bluff Elementary School property, on the current site of a small, fenced-in practice soccer field, adjacent to the school’s parking lot. The project has been in consideration since 2010, and has been a part of the Village’s Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan for the last several years. The courts were put on hold due to lack of funding, but the project gained new life when the Lake Bluff PTO, in partnership with the Shorewood Advancement Office, launched a fundraising drive to raise money for the courts in the early spring in honor of Lake Bluff Elementary School Principal Dr. Kirk Juffer and Shorewood High School Art Teacher Sonja Juffer, who both retired this year.
The addition of the tennis courts will do much to enhance our community. The new tennis courts will benefit the entire Shorewood community and its 13,337 residents by providing additional tennis facilities for Shorewood residents to use, adding to the three courts at Shorewood Intermediate School and the two courts at Atwater Elementary School. The two new tennis courts at Lake Bluff will provide a great opportunity for community members to enjoy outdoor exercise and leisure, promote wellness in the Village of Shorewood and add additional facilities for Shorewood Recreation Department activities.
The project was submitted to the Village Parks Commission earlier in the spring, and the Parks Commission passed a motion, recommending that the Village move forward on the project. The Village Board subsequently approved the project.
Based upon preliminary cost estimates, the budget for the project is approximately $210,000, which includes storm water drain installation to prevent flooding. Installation of the courts will not include lights.
Fundraising efforts in conjunction with the retirement of Principal Juffer and Sonja Juffer helped to raise $10,000 for the project from over 120 donors, including Lake Bluff alumnus and former tennis pro and current broadcaster Leif Shiras. The Shorewood Foundation has given $10,000 to support the project, while the Village of Shorewood has invested $50,000, and the Shorewood School District has provided $140,000 from its Recreation Fund, for a total of $210,000.
Now that total project funding has been secured, the Shorewood School District will announce an RFP (Request for Proposals), requesting competitive bids on the project in the coming weeks, with a tentative plan to select a vendor by Fall 2015 and launch the project in June 2016, at the end of the 2015-16 school year. The courts will run north-south, initially impacting some parking spaces in the staff lot, but allowing for an equal number of parking spaces to be added to the east once the courts are installed. The project is expected to take approximately three months to complete, with a tentative completion time frame of September 2016.
Hours of Use:
The Lake Bluff Tennis Courts will close at sundown, and will not have lighting that would permit play after dark.
Multi-Use Capability for Futsal:
As part of the project, additional lines will be implemented on the courts for Futsal, a variant of soccer played on smaller playing areas, which will add a multi-purpose dimension to the courts, allowing more use for additional recreational activities. The futsal lines will be painted perpendicular to the tennis court lines, therefore futsal games will not require the removal of the tennis nets and posts. Also, the WIAA does not prevent school districts or community programs from placing additional lines on tennis courts for use during the WIAA tournament series, so the futsal lines will not impact tennis tournament play.
Practice Soccer Field Usage:
Shorewood community soccer organizers have confirmed that another practice field location at Estabrook Park has been identified and secured, which makes the Lake Bluff practice soccer field unnecessary for future soccer practices.
The Shorewood School District is also working with local neighbors on strategies to minimize neighborhood impact from the tennis courts.
As the RFP for the tennis courts project is announced and a vendor is subsequently selected, announcements will be shared via the Shorewood School District and Village of Shorewood websites and communications channels.
For questions and more information about the Lake Bluff Tennis Courts project, please contact Shorewood School District Communications Coordinator Katelin Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday July, 22, 2015 at 10:20AM
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