1.4. Explore opportunities to expand or add recreational facilities and improve efficiency.
1.4.1. Explore opportunities to provide all-season access to certain high use athletic fields, commensurate with demand, through the use of temporary or permanent structures.
Historically, athletic programs were more seasonal, with different sports’ seasons having less overlap. In recent years, the seasons are being extended and some are played year-round. However, Arlington’s climate is not always conducive to outdoor winter athletics. Temporary, climate controlled structures around outdoor athletic fields or permanent, indoor recreation centers with full size athletic fields could be possible solutions to providing all-season access and may help alleviate the need for additional fields.
1.4.2. Identify the locations for one or more new multiuse activity centers to provide year-round access to indoor athletic courts and fields.
With high demand for field space and sports being played year-round by all participants, there is a need for more facilities that are dedicated to supporting this use. Currently diamond and rectangular sports teams utilize limited gym space available in County Community Centers and schools around the ever popular and expanding youth basketball and class programs. These gymnasiums are not designed for outdoor sports. One multi-use activity center is planned as a future phase of Long Bridge Park, although with changes the Board has approved to the park and facility layout, locating a multi-activity center at Long Bridge Park will need to be revisited in the future. Multi-use activity centers should include multi-use facilities that allow for flexibility to accommodate diamond and rectangular sports and indoor court opportunities for tennis, pickleball, volleyball, basketball, health and fitness, etc.
1.4.3. Establish a dedicated pickleball facility to meet the growing demand.
Pickleball is a growing recreation trend in Arlington, regionally and nationally. Currently, Arlington does not have any permanent outdoor pickleball locations. The County is piloting several locations on multi-use courts and should work to meet demand for pickleball through a combination of dedicated and multi-use facilities. The County uses space for indoor pickleball at Thomas Jefferson, Arlington Mill, and Walter Reed Community Centers.
1.4.4. Seek opportunities to enlarge or add space for community gardens and urban agriculture.
Existing community gardens are heavily used. Community gardens and urban agriculture are amenities that can be located in untraditional locations, such as on roofs.