SAN FRANCISCO – In April, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department broke ground on its project to transform its 125-year-old Golden Gate Park Tennis Center into one of the best public tennis facilities in the nation. On Thursday, Recreation and Park Commissioners will vote on an operator to handle its day-to-day management when it opens its doors.
The Commission’s Operations Committee will decide whether to authorize Rec and Parks to approve the selection of Lifetime Activities to enter into an agreement with the department to offer tennis programs for up to eight years at the center, which is set to open in Winter 2020. If approved, the matter will then go to the full Commission for a vote.
The operator’s responsibilities include ensuring the new center is welcoming to everyone by balancing the needs of public court rentals, access for SF Rec and Parks’ summer camps and afterschool tutoring program, local high school matches, lessons, clinics, pickleball and special events. It will also offer online court reservations, equipment rentals and refreshments, and perform daily maintenance.
Lifetime Activities was one of two companies to submit bids to SF Rec and Parks after the department issued a request for proposals on Aug. 7, 2018 and held a subsequent meeting with eight potential operators. It was subsequently chosen by a selection committee comprised of experts in public projects, urban recreation, tennis programming and finance. The company, started in 1993, runs municipal tennis centers in Cupertino, Pleasanton, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale and Walnut Creek.
SF Rec and Parks, the San Francisco Parks Alliance and the Tennis Coalition of San Francisco kicked off the Tennis Center renovation April 17. When complete, the center will offer 17 new USTA-regulation tennis courts, a sunken court feature and a dedicated pickleball court. New court lights will provide increased playtime for the public while the new clubhouse will allow SF Rec and Parks to expand its youth development and tutoring program to include middle school children from underserved neighborhoods.