Pickleball continues to generate debate

Neighbours to the Middleton Mountain Park tennis courts and the pickleball players who use it are at odds

Pickleball continues to strike a nerve at one Coldstream court.

Neighbours to the Middleton Mountain Park tennis courts and the pickleball players who use it are at odds, while the District of Coldstream is trying to accommodate all from the sidelines.

Since lines were painted on the court for pickleball use, the district has fielded a number of complaints around noise, parking and congestion.

As a result, pickleball was restricted to 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

“The hours are concentrating the annoyance,” said Derek Watson, who lives right across the street from the court and whose wife suffers from migraines.

“It’s not that we don’t like pickleball, it’s just that we are annoyed greatly by the sound.”

Watson says that the area, which acts as an amplifier, isn’t suitable for the sport, which is louder than tennis and can accommodate more games per court.

“We can’t get away from it,” said Watson of the “piercing” noise he hears from inside his home.

Meanwhile Mt. Thor resident Jim Chapman says pickleball should have more time at the court.

“It’s one of the fastest growing sports in North America,” said Chapman, who would like evening and weekend pickleball use at the court.

“Recreational facilities of Mt. Ida are for the use of all residents and not just a few.”

Coun. Gyula Kiss admits this is a tricky issue to resolve, as understands the recreational side as well as the neighbour’s concerns.

“Sometimes you can hear a mosquito buzzing around your ear and it’s really quiet but it really bugs you,” said Kiss.

Coun. Maria Besso points out that Kalview tennis courts were slated for improvements, which could accommodate pickleball, but costs came in over budget.

“This is a very difficult situation,” she said.

The district has examined the situation and is planning on discussing the issue further between now and February for budget discussions.

Public consultation is also anticipated on the subject through the parks master planning.

“I think some thoughts on ‘where’ should be given in the future,” said Mayor Jim Garlick of pickleball court locations.