Monday, November 16, 2009

Vacant Countryside tennis building may have a tenant

Countryside Tennis Building

Countryside Tennis Building

Nov. 16 Update: At the 7:00 PM Council  meeting Brian Townsend confirmed that the tennis building was not included in the contract being negotiated with Meadowbrook.

Nov. 15: Roanoke’s municipal golf course has a tennis building on it. The Countryside Golf Course tennis building that sits close to Highland Farm Road and William Fleming High School has been vacant since the former tenant Mike Johnson got the runaround when trying to renew his lease a few years ago.

Johnson leased it from Meadowbrook but when the time came for him to renew his lease (during the chaos of the year to year lease renewals since 2005) the city waffled too long. Johnson gave up and the city gave up $22,000 a year. I understand that this amount was reduced for 2007 when Johnson found out that Meadowbrook was only paying the city $17,500 a year.

Since 2007 the building has been vacant. It needs repair as even Johnson admitted.

At Monday’s 2:00 council meeting Blue Ridge Junior Tennis League will ask council if they can use it for their tennis program. Accompanying their request is a petition signed by 75 members of Blue Ridge.

In an email assistant manager, Brian Townsend said that the current five-year contract being negotiated focuses on the golf course only. I take it that this means it is up to city council to determine if they will dip into the City’s Facility Maintenance Fund to repair the city-owned tennis building.

Townsend further elaborated on the building’s condition saying, “I toured the building earlier this week with city staff, evidence of issues with roof condition and rain/water infiltration. No indication on usability of the other building systems (HVAC, lights, etc.) as electricity was turned off.

[It] would take more investigation to determine if the building was usable for the purposes desired…and what costs would have to be incurred to make it that way.”

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Community, Roanoke City Politics

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