Letter From 140+ Greenwich Residents Opposes Upcoming Loughlin Park Court Changes

The below letter is signed by 142 residents from throughout town who would like to ensure that the parks and recreation department keep the current dual use of the Loughlin Park Tennis Courts and allow both Greenwich tennis and pickleball players to make court reservations at all times during the 2022 and future seasons. The names of these residents, which includes individuals from Central Greenwich, Cos Cob, Loughlin Park and numerous tennis card holders from across town, can be found below.

On March 18th, the Town of Greenwich Parks & Recreation Department placed signs at the entrance of Loughlin Park Tennis Courts indicating these courts are now “Pickleball Only.” After phone calls and emails by many individuals, the signs came down a few days later.

As we understand, on May 1, 2022, the Loughlin Park courts will convert from their current dual use as two tennis courts and/or four pickleball courts into courts exclusively for pickleball play and tennis card holders will no longer be able to book a time through the town website. If these courts are converted to pickleball only on May 1st, and tennis players are unable to reserve a court, it will mean the request of one user group has resulted in a major change of use to a beloved town park without public comment or consultation of additional stakeholders. This sets a dangerous precedent for all of our town’s recreation areas. The dictates of one group, especially without any public input, should not be the basis for a decision of this magnitude.

Greenwich Pickleball has been lobbying for dedicated pickleball courts throughout town. According to their website, they are petitioning for a permanent eight court outdoor pickleball center in Greenwich. Over the past few months, Greenwich Pickleball and Greenwich Parks and Recreation have been meeting and at no time during this multi-month period was input sought from current tennis card holders, local community residents, or Loughlin Park neighbors. This represents a clear lack of transparency. Just as in other town decisions, it is imperative that a significant change of use be posted and an opportunity provided for all town residents to share their input.

These courts are currently equally enjoyed by both tennis and pickleball players throughout the community. While pickleball players, many of whom are not Greenwich residents, use these courts, the courts are also used by tennis-playing local children, neighbors, and numerous Greenwich residents.  While pickleball players are welcome to share the space in Loughlin Park, already used by both groups, should anyone wish an exclusive pickleball experience in town, they can use the dedicated pickleball courts at Christiano Park.

We ask that Parks and Recreation keep the current dual use of the Loughlin Park Tennis Courts and allow both Greenwich tennis and pickleball players to make court reservations at all times during the 2022 and future seasons. Community parks are for everyone. There is no reason why the two groups cannot both enjoy the Loughlin Park Courts. We the signers of this letter, many of whom are pickeball players ourselves, do not believe that the courts should be switched to single use by pickleball players only.

Should there be any proposed changes to Loughlin Park in the future, we ask that park neighbors, town residents, and any impacted user groups be informed and involved in the entire process, as significant and hasty changes should not be made to any town park without transparency and public input.

Francesca Ambrosoni, Craig Apple, Jill Barile, Nicholas Barile, Eric Barrow, Win Bates, Peter Boldt, John Bosco, Traci Bosco, Barbara Brigham, Craig Bugniazet, Barron Butler, Katherine Butler, Randy Caravella, Robert Carlson, David  Carrescia, Lawton Carrescia, Alex Catterick, David Chapman, Keith Chernoff, Whitney Chernoff, Matthew Chiavaroli, Veronica Chiavaroli, Andrea Cilio, Bruno Cilio, Christin Cody-O’Brien, Eric Cornell, Jim Cummings, Lorenzo De Ferrari, Pietro De Ferrari, Sam Deibler, Jill Derikrava, Michael Derikrava, Geraldine Flemming, Bruce Fogwell, Nancy Fogwell, Jordan Force, Wendie Force, Greg Frisoli, Pamela Frisoli, Audrianna Ginise, Kristin Goldfarb, Russell Goldfarb, Sandra Grandinetti, Steve Grandinetti, Joseph Gross, Holly Hill, James Porter Hill, Olivia Holt, Catherine Horn, William Horn, Chris Howes, William Irvine, Elizabeth Jeffe, Robert Jeffe, Jennifer Jones, John Kamen, Sandy Mecsery Kamen, Thomas J Kartanowicz, Dave Katona, Tricia Khan, Christine Kopprasch, Akshit Kumar, Fred Laffan, Nanette Laffan, Jodie LaRocque, Caroline Lerum, Ed Lerum, Phoeby Lindsay, Stewart Lindsay, Terry Lohmeyer, David Lomasney, Jen Lozina, Matthew Maguire, Marco Marcellini, Jim McGovern, Julie McGovern, Michaela Memeger, Richard Memeger, Anne Merrill, George Merrill, Jan Merrill, Sean Meyer, Ariel Goldblatt Meyer, Marisa Mingione, Peter Mingione, Rosalie C. Monahan, Jon Nevins, Claire Nordin, Jeff Nordin, Dennis O’Brien, Debora Penn, Russell Penn, Dr Shubha Phansalkar, Kim Potvin, J. Kim Purcell, Sherri Purcell, Katherine Pushkar, David Quaranta, Jeanne Quaranta, Bret Rattray, Susan Rattray, John Rosenberg, Whitney Rosenberg, Matt Russ, Michelle Russ, Ernst Schirmer, Aaron Shamshoian, Lindsey Shamshoian, Ann Shifman-Deibler, F C Smith, Pragati Soni, Kay Sterling, Robert Sterling, Christine Surette, Victoire Swaels, Beth Sweeney, Ryan Sweeney, Anne M Tabacco, John Tabacco, Cassandra Tai-Marcellini, Michael Tocci, Nathalie Tocci, Alison Torres, Christian Torres, Julie Tretiak, Barbara Urso, Alison Walsh, James Walsh, Jon Wells, John Whalen, Susan Whalen, Jason Wilber, Josephinea Wilber, Thomas Williamson, Chris Wilson, Lauren Wilson, Ron Wilson, Gail Zaffino, Joe Zaffino, Brian Zeller, Colleen Zeller