The Olentangy Local Schools Board of Education voted Thursday to approve a contract with Vasco Sports Contractors to relocate Olentangy Orange High School’s tennis courts to Orange Middle School, as well as resurface the track at Shanahan Middle School.
Moving the tennis courts to the middle school solves multiple problems for the high school. Moisture had been an issue on the tennis courts in the spring, so much so that some of the courts weren’t fit for use at times. With the relocation of the courts, Orange High School will be able to create 150 additional parking spaces. Of all four high schools in the district, Orange has the fewest parking spaces available.
“The Orange High School site was difficult to build on because of the contour and the number of wetlands that are on the property,” said Jeff Gordon, district facilities director. “As our enrollment has grown and the district has been able to facilitate more students at each high school, the parking has become tighter.
“The only other option would have been to give up practice field space at a school that was already short on athletic field space. We have had concerns with water seeping up onto the playing surface at their current location, requiring some courts to be closed at times in the spring. Since we had a need for more parking at OOHS, it made sense to move the tennis courts to higher ground at the middle school and add parking at the high school.”
Orange Middle School sits right next to the high school, and the eight tennis courts will be constructed just south of the middle school building.
Originally, the court relocation and parking lot paving were scheduled to be completed ahead of this current school year. However, the summer months between school years proved to be too tight a timeframe to work in.
“We had to go through a process to verify that we had enough storm retention at the sight to accommodate the additional impervious surface,” Gordon said. “The process of completing this verification took longer than expected, and we missed our tight window between the spring and fall tennis seasons.”
The BOE also approved a latex track replacement at Shanahan Middle School. The tennis courts and track projects have a combined price tag of $491,367.
Reach Dillon Davis at 740-413-0904. Follow him on Twitter @ddavis_gazette.