The grand opening of Ocean Township’s new eight-court, indoor West Park Avenue Tennis Center is scheduled for Sun., Aug. 26.
“We are very excited about opening and we are working hard every day to get ready,” PATC General Manager Sean McCarthy said.
The new $3 million tennis center is located in front of the existing township pool complex on West Park Avenue. The 58,000-square-foot facility, with a clock tower, will house eight indoor tennis courts and have a two-tiered pavilion where spectators can watch either indoor or outdoor matches. The existing outdoor tennis courts will remain but be moved to another adjacent location.
The center will also contain locker rooms and bathrooms and artificial turf can be installed so that other sporting events can be held- the first indoor fields in the township.
McCarthy said the project began in the first week of July last year and that they had hoped to open sooner this year.
“But there were various weather-related construction delays. Plus, we did not want to pave the outdoor courts over the winter. We are painting and lining the courts right now,” he said.
He said public interest has been high about the new tennis center and that the grand opening is around the time of the U.S. Tennis Open in Flushing, NY.
“We expect interest in tennis to be very high then and hope people will come out and see this beautiful building,” McCarthy said.
“We are getting a lot of people stopping by or calling and it seems the general public is very excited. It is a nice facility that is centrally located in Ocean Township. There is a lot of positive feedback from the public and I can’t wait until it opens,” he said.
He said that last minutes details, like the delivery and installation of tables, chairs and benches, are being taken care of right now, along with a lot of housekeeping.
Events will run from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. on opening day and people are welcome to join resident tennis pro Tom Fontana for an afternoon of tours, demos, and special appearances by tennis celebrities and Tour Players– all part of the Wilson World Demo Experience and Festival.
The PATC, at 615 W. park Avenue, is currently accepting reservations for contract time, lessons, clinics and hourly play time.
The PATC was built under a unique private/public/partnership. The township will receive $500,000 for each of two consecutive 10-year leases, with a two-percent increase every year. Taxes are about $12,000 a year but the site is not assessed on the land, which is owned by the township.
The township will get the deed to the building once it is built but it will continue to be operated by the Park Avenue Tennis Center corporation until the two, 10-year leases are over. Then the township will operate it and be its primary user.
“This is a great addition to the township and we are very excited to get it open,” Mayor Christopher Siciliano said.
He said the new facility offers a unique opportunity to bring recreation and school sporting programs together under one indoor roof.
“It’s a great and unique partnership between a business and the municipality and it should work out great,” he said.