Tennis court construction requires attention to detail and a very solid foundation. First of all, the area must be excavated to a good depth. Any organic material under the tennis court will eventually rot away, leaving a void under the tennis court. This could lead to an eventual low point and spoil the playing surface. After clearing the organic matter, the sub-grade below the tennis court is flattened. Ideally, the court should be designed with a north–south orientation, but this is not always possible in residential home tennis courts.


Tennis court construction Balwyn - Reds Landscaping & Design
Sport facilities construction and repair Balwyn.

The geotextile layer for your tennis court

A geotextile layer is laid over the sub-grade to block any root growth from nearby trees and ensure the subgrade does not affect drainage of the road base by oozing up and filling the voids.


Tennis Court Solid Road Base Foundation

The road base material was spread evenly over the area, followed by even more flattening. It is essential that a robust foundation be created to maintain the stability of the playing surface. The thick layer of road base should be at least 150 mm after it has been flattened and compressed to ensure a stable foundation for the tennis court.

Tennis Court Construction Layers - Reds Landscaping & Design
Typical Tennis Court Construction Layers.


Tennis Court Asphalting

Ideally, two different layers of asphalt should be used in the tennis court base with two different specifications. The lower layer of asphalt is a thicker, coarser asphalt, with the upper layer much finer. The fine upper layer needs to be as flat as possible. The court is constructed to shed water in two planes and it is essential that puddles do not form on the surface.


Tennis Court Cushioning Layer

The optional cushioning layer is an ideal choice for residential and club tennis courts. The cushioning layer reduces impact on a tennis player’s feet, ankles, and knees. By providing a small amount of flexibility, it also makes the upper playing surface more durable. The playing surface is much less likely to crack and peel if it is bonded to a surface with a little bit of “give”. The Australian open surface uses Plexicushion.


The Playing Surface

Modern material technology has given the customer a wide range of choices for the playing surface itself. Many people will remember when the Australian Open was played at Kooyong on grass surfaces. Grass courts are still common for tennis tournaments in Great Britain, most notably Wimbledon. In the countries in continental Europe, clay courts often use a clay system known as “en tout cas”, meaning “in any case”. Although this is a French phrase, the company, En tout cas, is British. They came up with a clever solution to the problems caused by water on clay tennis surfaces. The solution is to use crushed brick, which greatly improves drainage. Most clay courts today use crushed brick as the main constituent of the surface.

Table Tennis Table with bespoke surface treatment - Reds Landscaping & Design
Landscaping the public space around the tennis court.


The Balwyn Community Centre Tennis Court

Tennis courts in public spaces like the Balwyn Community Centre need to be low maintenance and durable. The landscape architects, ACLA, wisely chose Euroclay for the playing surface. This is a surface that provides all of the features of a clay tennis surface with very low maintenance. It even looks and plays like en tout cas, but does not require rolling or watering. Even better, tennis can still be played in wet conditions. Ideal for the diehard tennis enthusiast homeowner.


Tennis Court Repair

The landscaping project at Balwyn Community Centre also involved making repairs to an adjoining court. A large tree near the tennis court had caused damage due to the tree root growing into the court. It was necessary to dig a trench between the tree and the court to install a root barrier to prevent further damage. All of the roots under the court had to be removed as organic material rotting away under a court can lead to further damage in the future.

Outdoor Sports facilities Balwyn Community Centre - Reds Landscaping & Design
Court Construction Balwyn Community Centre.


What is Euroclay?

Euroclay is a UV stabilised polyethylene carpet with a sand infill. Polyethylene is a very tough material that is also very stain resistant. It is also relatively inexpensive, so using this type of construction will save money in both construction and maintenance.


Other types of construction

There are, of course, other types of court construction techniques. The lower layers can be concrete or can be permeable materials with drainage systems. The goal in all of these is to provide a playing surface that is durable, even, well drained, and provides a fair game for all players.


Landscape Design of Tennis Courts

The courts need to be designed and constructed with a slight fall to shed water. It is essential that the water drains to the outside of the court and into the surrounding area. It is important that any gardens near the courts are designed and constructed so that material from the gardens cannot wash onto the court playing surface.

Tennis Court Landscaping - Reds Landscaping & Design
Tennis Court Landscaping at Balwyn Community Centre.

Consideration should also be given to player safety with any garden edging or branches near the court. Tennis players often need to go into the nearby gardens to retrieve tennis balls, so this should also be considered. Some fast growing climbing plants would be a good option for some privacy around a residential tennis court.

Contact Red’s Landscaping for an integrated Tennis Court and Landscaping package.

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