CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — A central Iowa city could welcome a new outdoor pickleball complex later this year.

The Cedar Falls City Council has approved a project for new pickleball courts at Orchard Hill Park that will be financed with public and private money, the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reported .

In addition to building pickleball courts, the plan will retain and resurface the park’s tennis courts and rebuild the basketball court.

Jennifer Rodenbeck, city director of finance and business operations, said the Cedar Falls Pickleball Club and locals fundraised to move the project up to this summer.

“People really wanted that to happen and took it upon themselves to raise the money,” said Rodenbeck.

Pickleball has become a popular game among seniors and students in Cedar Falls. It’s played on a badminton-sized court with a tennis net, plastic paddles and a pickleball.

The project would be financed by the pickleball club’s $50,000 and private grants. The city would offer $50,000 with general obligation bonds. Another $50,000 is being requested from the Black Hawk County Gaming Association, which will make a decision next month.

Depending on whether the gaming funds are approved, the project could start construction this summer or fall, according to Mark Ripplinger, city director of municipal operations and programs.

Members of the pickleball club said that the complex will be the largest of its kind within 50 miles. They said it could serve as a tourist attraction for tournaments and fun.

Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, http://www.wcfcourier.com

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