Edmond approves tennis center management agreement

By Eriech Tapia For The Oklahoman

EDMOND — A new Kickingbird Tennis Center management agreement was approved this week after revisions were requested, paving the way to a groundbreaking on a new tennis center.

New changes were included in the agreement passed by the Edmond City Council, including changes to the hours of operation.

“We tried to clear up a few points that came up from the advisory board,” said Assistant City Manager Steve Commons.

“We did not agree on everything, but the things we did not agree on we will continue to work on,” he said.

The agreement had been scheduled to be voted on at the Nov. 27 Edmond City Council meeting. Councilwoman Elizabeth Waner, however, asked that it go back to the KickingBird Tennis Advisory Board for reconsideration.

“I appreciate that effort,” she said. “I hope everybody will continue to be involved as we work through these new parameters.”

The joint project with Edmond Public Schools to build a new tennis center was unanimously approved by the school board on Dec. 4. No date has been set on when construction will begin, but it is expected to be next year.

At Monday's meeting, Bill Towler, Oklahoma president of the U.S. Tennis Association, gave approval of the new center and the manager.

“Your choice in Mr. Minihan is an excellent choice, and the center has the full support of the USTA,” Towler said.

David Minihan is expected to serve as the director of tennis under the proposed contract.

The new center is expected to bring in 7,200 U.S. Tennis Association league players each year. The league is a major contributor to Kickingbird's business.

“We are a big customer, we are a good customer and we want to be a good partner,” Towler said.

The new center is expected to be built on the northeast corner of 15th Street and Kelly Avenue on 24.4 acres, which were bought by the city last year for $2.5 million.

No final price has been set, but the project is expected to cost more than $14 million.

The proposal for the new center includes 10 indoor courts, along with 18 outdoor courts, six to be built at a later time.

A conversation about revenue sharing between the city and Edmond Tennis Services is expected to occur next year, Commons told the council.

“We are going to take a look at how that relationship works in the future,” Commons said.

Changes to the agreement included new hours during Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The new center is expected to be closed on the Thursday and Friday of Thanksgiving week along with Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and the day after.

Edmond Tennis Services will take control of management of the current facility beginning Jan. 1, then will transfer to the new facility once it is built.

Courtesy of The Oklahoman
Full article: http://newsok.com/edmond-approves-tennis-center-management-agreement/article/5575712

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