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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

Outdoor basketball courts to be repaired by summer

Derek Liang
The outdoor basketball court without flooring at night.

In early January 2023, a series of storms caused widespread power outages and also resulted in damage to the school’s outdoor basketball courts that are made of large rubber tiles that provide a superior playing experience. 

On one of the two courts, these tiles were blown off the ground, exposing a layer of concrete. 

Although still playable, the concrete surface causes a greater chance of injury due to the lack of shock absorption that the basketball court floor tiles provide. In recent months, the district finalized a decision to renovate the damaged court, which is expected to reopen over the summer.

Over the summer of 2023, caution tape was put up across the damaged court due to complaints about the slippery and damaged surface. Despite these barriers, however, individuals who wanted to play on the courts ignored the tapes and took them down in order to access the damaged court. After this, the school removed the tiles to clear up the court slightly, although leftover debris was left over portions of the uncovered concrete.

According to Tanya De La Cruz — the district’s public information director — the estimated renovation will cost roughly $72,000 as the damage has been determined as a “Like for Like” repair, meaning that the renovation will use the original flooring of the court. Of the $72,000 bill, district insurance will cover roughly $62,000 while the district will  pay for the remaining $10,000. The district’s spending will come out of the Routine Restricted Maintenance Budget, the main budget responsible for covering a large portion of district maintenance across both schools.

As of April 1, the only expected delay on the project is the material manufacturing that has not been completed. The main renovation materials consist of a shock absorbing understructure and a high-impact polypropylene copolymer tile that take approximately a few weeks to make.

The district’s director of facilities, Toby Mockler, hired the company AllSport America — a sports construction firm — to conduct the renovations after submitting a repair quote through their website.

Among the many basketball players who have spent countless hours at the school courts is junior Stven Ning; he recalls playing for hours on the courts with his friends everyday during past summers.

“It’s really tragic that the courts have been damaged for so long but I’m glad that they’re going to be fixed by the summer,” Ning said. “The courts are a big highlight of the school campus because not only SHS students play there, but also little kids with lots of passion for basketball.”

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