Construction for Tennis Courts Causes Parking Shortage

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Student drivers came to school on Monday, Oct. 2, to fewer parking spots. Construction workers removed trees from the area in preparation for the new tennis courts. Photo by Antonio Cabrera.

By Jillian McGuire
If you are a freshman driver, you have a long walk to the high school for the rest of this semester. The high school parking lot will lose about eight parking spots in the west lot to allow the contractors access to the construction site for six new tennis courts.

“I think the school should have thought about putting in a new parking lot before the tennis courts,” freshman Lizzy Niehaus said. “I also don’t find it fair that only freshmen are asked to park far away.” Niehaus said that she is missing class to find parking. “Every day when I come from Lisbon, I have to leave my classes early now so I can park and then walk over to the high school so that I’m not late for my next class,” she said.

However, older students believe the easiest solution to parking is to move the freshmen to another lot. “I think that since not that many freshmen drive anyways, it shouldn’t be that big of a deal,” said senior Josh Jordan.

The tennis players are excited about the prospect of the new courts which are causing the construction headaches. Senior tennis player Laurel Sherman said that the courts are a necessity. “It will be much more convenient for meets, and the P.E. classes that use them,” she said. “It is nice that the school is making an effort to enhance the tennis program.”

In the past, the high school could not host home meets because six courts are required, and the Mount Vernon campus only had three. “We liked how close (the old courts) were to the school,” said Quincy Chihak. “We disliked how there were only three of them. We had to have meets at Cornell.”

Senior Clarissa Player is looking forward to the convenience of the new courts. “It’s nice to not have to drive to Cornell for meets,” she said.

Sherman went on to say, “It was difficult practicing on the courts, because not only were there cracks making the balls fly all over, but there was also no space so we couldn’t all fit and play at once.”

Noting the uneven surface, senior Quincy Chihak said, “Our courts were complete trash; when the ball hit the ground it would probably hit a crack and bounce weird.” The tennis court construction will take place mainly from October through December if weather is permitting. There will be no parking along the roadway leading into the high school parking lot. To help make parking easier in the high school parking lots, all freshmen are being asked to park between the middle school and elementary school, by the softball field, or up 7th Ave, and walk to the high school from there.

On day four of the parking lot being blocked off, construction continues. The trees are down, grass is removed, and land is being graded. Photo Oct. 5 by Reese Panos.