TF South tennis courts get refreshed

by Melanie Jongsma

LANSING, Ill. (July 19, 2019) – A chain and lock on the gate of the TF South tennis courts for the past week have prevented would-be players from entering. “Tennis Courts Closed for Resurfacing,” reads a laminated sign on the chain link door.

The courts were completely resurfaced in the summer of 2015, and in the years since then some cracks and fissures have appeared, which is normal given Chicago-area seasonal variances. When the cracks open wide enough and deep enough, not only is play affected, but also rain is able to get in—and when that freezes, the damage becomes more severe.

George Garcia has been with Perm-A-Seal 19 years. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Perm-a-Seal Asphalt Maintenance (www.permaseal.com) has been contracted to do the work, and George Garcia—a 19-year veteran with the company—has been leading the crew at TF South. They began by cleaning the playing surface with power blowers and filling the larger cracks with sand before adding a binder. Smaller cracks can be patched with binder only.

Cracks like this affect play but also allow moisture in below the surface. The Perm-A-Seal team has begun filling these cracks with a white sand. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
The binder can be applied directly to surface cracks. If the crack is deeper, it must be filled with sand first. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

The binder can be applied in any kind of dry temperature; it is not affected by heat or humidity, though the workers might be. Garcia’s crew will try to finish this step of the process today, drinking plenty of water, and stopping occasionally to sit in the air conditioned cabs of their trucks.

Once the binder is cured, it will be painted. Though the same colors will be used, the difference between the new paint and the old paint will be noticeable until the new paint weathers a little.

Tim Stephan, District 215 Director of Facilities, is hoping the entire project will be finished by July 26, weather permitting.

TF South High School is located at 18500 Burnham Avenue. Their tennis courts are located to the west of the school, on Chicago Avenue.

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