The Schoenbaum Tennis Courts are on their way toward getting repaired.
Charleston City Council members approved a contract with West Virginia Paving to repair the courts last week, adding a drainage system beneath the asphalt.
The approved contract came more than a year after the City Council’s committee on parks and recreation recommended the city publish a request for quotes for repairs to the courts.
Standing water from beneath the court seeps up between cracks in the courts’ asphalt in the heat.
West Virginia Paving will install drainage pipes, remove and reinstall the courts’ pavement, and provide new fencing.
The project will cost more than $835,000 for all eight courts. That’s $200,000 more than the city engineer’s office initially expected. West Virginia Paving was the only company to bid on the project after it was placed out for three separate bids.
Last year, the city filed a lawsuit against West Virginia Paving, alleging the company conspired with other asphalt companies to illegally fix the price of asphalt for roads projects statewide.
The first time the city placed the project up for bid, when it had an expedited timeline, no contractors placed a bid. The second time, one bid came back — for $1.3 million, said City Manager David Molgaard.
City officials tried to rush the project to get tournaments in the city on time, including the Charleston Public Courts tennis tournament. By the time the bids came in, the tournament had already been moved to county-owned Coonskin Park.
City Engineer Chris Knox said he thinks the project may have been delayed because it’s complicated. A tennis court can’t have any bumps or cracks and requires a certain level of expertise, he said.
The project also requires contractors to dig up several layers of asphalt to install the drainage system. City utility workers will complete some storm sewer work for the project to save costs, Knox said.
There’s no timeline for the project’s completion, Molgaard said. It will be the first major renovation to the courts since 2002.
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