TRURO - Truro town council has voted to support an expansion of the Truro Tennis Club.
The project will see the courts upgraded from the current four regular courts to six courts, plus two mini courts and would require using a portion of the existing green space. The idea is to offer tennis instruction and opportunities for children 10 years of age and younger.
The vote to allow the expansion was 4-2 in favour of the project. Coun. Greg MacArthur and Brian Kinsman didn't support the motion. The decision was met with mixed reviews not only from town councillors but some residents as well.
Coun. Charles Cox described the expansion as "good, clean recreation."
"I don't see this as offensive to other things in the park. In no way is it intrusive," said Cox.
Coun. Kinsman, however, didn't agree.
"The green space is an important area of the park and (the expansion) would limit the future use of open space," said Kinsman.
Coun. MacArthur said although he was supportive of the expansion, he wasn't pleased that a number of people in the surrounding neighbourhoods were upset with the proposal. Almost 30 people signed a petition stating their opposition to the expansion because of its affect on the existing green space.
"I'm not against this development (but) 28 people in the area say they are upset ... and we didn't get people involved," said MacArthur.
Ron Chisholm, club president, insisted supporters of the expansion informed the public of the proposal.
"People are aware because of the door-knocking we've done. We are not keeping this a secret," Chisholm said, adding the hope was to begin the project at the end of the month so it's ready for the spring.
Some area residents argued they didn't know details of the project.
"We weren't informed," said Rosewyn Place resident Rhonda Blaikie. "I was home all day long and was never contacted."
Elaine Hudson, a nearby Park Road resident, wasn't pleased with council's decision to allow expansion.
"I am angry. The first I heard of this was a couple of nights ago. Not to be informed is the whole thing and it's been going on for a year," said Hudson.
Her husband, Todd, said there are underutilized courts in Truro, including the field beside Cobequid Educational Centre and a field behind the Nova Scotia Community College.
Doug Edwards, a member of the tennis club's executive, however, was happy with the decision to expand.
"I'm thrilled. It gives us the opportunity to provide tennis instruction for the young kids in a centralized area," Edwards said.
There is a 14-day appeal period once an ad appears in this paper, which is expected to appear this weekend.