Tennis court bids sought

Duane Hicks

The next step is underway to get new tennis courts built here.
The town has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a firm to design and build a fenced, four-court multi-use tennis facility at the St. Francis Sports Field.
“We’re hoping to get as many contractors to put forth a bid as we can to give us some choice to select the best contractor to produce what we’re after,” said Community Services manager Jason Kabel, who also sits on the Fort Frances Multi-Use Tennis Court Committee.
“I’ve already heard back from five contractors who expressed interested, some of them from parts of Ontario looking to work with local contractors,” he noted.
“And then others that are interested in the whole job,” added Kabel.
“I anticipate we’re going to get some interest from Manitoba but so far I’ve only heard for Ontario organizations.”
While the actual cost of the new facility won’t be known until a contractor is determined, Kabel said the committee has received preliminary quotes stating it will cost about $420,000 ($100,000 per court plus fencing).
Much of the funding for the project is in place.
In addition to the roughly $30,000 pledged by the public so far, the Trillium Foundation is contributing $150,000 while the Town of Fort Frances has committed $112,000.
The Rainy River District School Board also has pledged to match the town’s contribution ($112,000), with several conditions.
One stipulates the town will be responsible for maintenance of the courts.
The school board also is calling for a new joint-use agreement for the St. Francis Sports Field, along with the formation of an advisory committee that will meet as necessary to discuss items relevant to the courts.
The Northwest Catholic District School Board already has provided the land for the courts, but also is looking to help fund the project.
Kabel said the committee’s aim is to have the new courts built before the end of August—just in time for the new school year.
“It’s very exciting,” he enthused.
RFPs must be received no later than April 19 at 2 p.m.
Proposals will be opened immediately thereafter in the Committee Room at the Civic Centre, then will be reviewed by the committee.
A firm then will be submitted to town council for final approval.
As is the case with all RFPs, the selected proposal is not necessarily based on the lowest bid but on which firm is going to do the best work for the town.
Questions regarding this proposal can be directed to Kabel via e-mail at jkabel@fort-frances.com
He also can be reached at 274-4561 (phone) or 274-3799 (fax).