One of Australia’s greatest ever athletes was in town on Saturday to unveil the new Blacktown Tennis Centre in Stanhope.
Two-time Wimbledon champion Evonne Goolagong Cawley joined Tennis Australia president Stephen Healy to officially open the state-of-the-art facilities at 11am on Saturday.
“The investment by Blacktown Council is believed to be the biggest single investment into a tennis facility by a local government in NSW,” Tennis Australia participation director Paul Cammack said.
“That's fantastic news for both the sport and the Blacktown community.
“We hope all visitors to this facility enjoy the opportunity to participate in tennis and to lead an active lifestyle, and trust it will bring great enjoyment to the local community for many years to come.”
The unveiling was made prior to SportsFest, an annual festival offering free sporting activities.
These include clinics, interactive displays, appearances from sporting personalities, giveaways and prizes.
The centre features 16 ‘plexicushion’ hardcourts – including four championship size courts and an exhibition court – making it the largest tennis centre of its kind in NSW.
Plexicushion is the same playing surface used in the Australia Open.
The new facility also includes grandstand seating for 288 spectators on the show court, courts designed for multi-sport use such as futsal, LED lighting, an administration and tournament office, function and meeting rooms overlooking the exhibition court, and a children’s play area.
The centre will host state, regional and local competitions as well as being available for the community to hire for coaching and social matches.
The $16 million project was funded by Blacktown City Council with a contribution from Tennis Australia through its national court rebate scheme.
The development was designed by Allen Jack and Cottier Architects in consultation with the council, Blacktown Tennis Inc, Tennis NSW and Tennis Australia, with construction completed by Statewide Civil and Mono Constructions.
As part of the development, Blacktown Leisure Centre Stanhope’s existing indoor stadium has increased from two courts to four.
Each court is suitable for a variety of sports including basketball, badminton, futsal and netball.
The stadium will also be able to host events and functions with a capacity of 2,400.
The addition of Blacktown Tennis Centre Stanhope to the existing Leisure Centre and Library complex means the site now offers 38,000 square metres of sporting, leisure and recreation space for the Blacktown and western Sydney communities.