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Fairfax County, Virginia local news

Kendale Woods Park’s squash courts are currently striped so they can be used for both tennis and pickleball (courtesy of Fairfax County Park Authority)

The days of pickleball at Kendale Woods Park in Annandale are coming to an end.

In response to noise complaints from local residents, the Fairfax County Park Authority will remove the pickleball lines from the park’s two squash courts and turn them back into tennis facilities.

The repainting and striping process will begin on Monday, June 3, and end on Monday, June 17, if the weather cooperates, the park authority announced last Thursday (May 2).

“We have determined that the location is not conducive to playing pickleball and are looking for a more suitable location for these courts,” FCPA spokesperson Benjamin Boxer told FFXnow.

Kendale Woods, located at 3813A Kendale Road near Mason Crest Elementary School, was one of 23 FCPA facilities with an outdoor pickleball court when the county completed its pickleball study report in December 2021.

The survey surveyed residents to gauge demand for facilities to support the increasingly popular sport and established guidelines for the parks authority to follow when planning and designing future courses. As a pre-existing facility, the shared-use courts at Kendale Woods do not meet the recommended site selection criteria, the FCPA says.

In addition to the lack of parking, which forces visitors to park on the streets in the surrounding residential areas, the park is directly adjacent to several homes, including three that Boxer says are as close as 150 to 100 feet.

“We have received complaints from the community about the noise,” he said.

The Pickleball Study recommends providing one parking spot per player on each pickleball court, citing survey results that showed most players drive. It does not specify how far the courts should be from residential areas, but says screening “should be considered” to reduce noise from the paddles and balls and players’ social contact.

Noise issues have become a common source of tension between pickleball players and residents in neighborhoods across the country. The city of Vienna shortened pickleball hours at its only tennis courts in response to complaints from neighbors, and earlier this year the Reston Association dropped plans to include the sport in its planned renovation of Barton Hill’s tennis courts.

“The Park Authority remains committed to providing diverse recreational opportunities for residents of all ages and interests,” the FCPA said in a news release. “The process of identifying alternative locations to install new pickleball courts in lieu of the one at Kendale Woods Park has begun.”

Until another location is identified, the park authority recommends players visit other courses in the area. Options within five miles of Kendale Park include Roundtree, Annandale, Wakefield, Lillian Carey, Hogge and Spring Lane parks, as well as the Providence Rec Center.

Although not a public facility, Annandale will get 18 new indoor pickleball courts later this year or early 2025 as part of a 50,000-square-foot complex planned by Down the Line Sports Center, which opened a smaller five-court facility. in Fairfax City in February.

The FCPA has significantly expanded its selection of pickleball courts in recent years. After having just two dedicated courts – both at Wakefield Park – when the pickleball study report was published, it now has 84 facilities, 16 of which are dedicated to the sport, according to the press release.