BERNALILLO COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – The Paradise Hills Community Center is the most heavily used community center in Bernalillo County, but it is in desperate need of a facelift. Now, the county wants to spend more than $3 million fixing it up.
Ken Lloyd plays pickleball at Paradise Hills Community Center five times a week.
“Pickleball is a bit like tennis, we play half a court. We play with a side paddle, a wiffleball and a net that is about 36 inches tall,” Lloyd said.
But he says sometimes, there’s a lot more sitting and waiting than there is playing.
“When you have 35 people and we can only play 12 at a time, a lot of people stand around waiting,” said Lloyd.
That’s why he and some of his friends are hoping part of the county’s renovations will be added gym space.
According to community center staff, at least 1,500 people visit the center every day. The county says it’s been at least 15 years since the center was last updated, and they say it’s bursting at the seams.
“It’s time. There’s a lot of use, there would be more use with more facilities,” pickleball player Bob Ashmore said.
Right now, they’re in the design phase of the project. They say they will be replacing the bathhouse in the aquatics center, adding a fitness center, and increasing lobby space.
The county is also asking for community feedback. Wednesday night at the Paradise Hills Community Center, people can give their suggestions about what they would like to see in the renovations.
They hope to start the construction within 12 to 18 months.