Council Applies for Webb Tennis Court Repair Grant
WETHERSFIELD - Two years after the deterioration of the Webb Elementary School tennis courts prompted their closing, they will get the renovation work that they have been needing--hopefully with a little bit of help, said Wethersfield Town Manager Jeff Bridges.

       The Town Council has voted unanimously to approve an application for a grant from the United States Tennis Association. The grant can potentially be worth up to $20,000, or 20 percent of the estimated $100,000 construction cost, according to Social and Youth Services Director Kathy Bagley.

       “They’re recommending reinforced concrete instead of an asphalt surface,” Bridges said during last Monday’s meeting, during which the application was given the go-ahead. “So that brings the price up a little bit, but they’re recommending that we apply for the grant.”

       That recommendation is based on a preliminary site evaluation and advisory process, Bagley said. The U.S. Tennis Association took a look at the courts in order to determine the best approach for replacing them and decide whether or not the project would be eligible to apply for the grant, she said.

       “At no cost they’ll give you technical assistance on your design plans,” Bagley said. “You provide information on what you want to do with your facility. You provide photos of the site, what you want to do, and what is going to be your design process.”

       Bagley said that she does not know the full extent of what criteria is used to determine whether or not a project can potentially receive aid from the organization, but said that the district’s willingness to change the dimensions to be more kid-friendly probably helped.

       “They’re looking to make the court smaller for children to play on,” she said. “So that’s something they do look at.”

       Bagley said that the district is hoping to get construction started in the summer in order to have the courts ready by this coming school year.