RIRC Newsletter

PROGRESS OF THE NEW BUBBLE INSTALLATION

The installation of the new bubbles began on Saturday, August 3. All the light fixtures, nets, divider curtains, etc. were removed from the North Bubble. On Sunday, August 4 the North Bubble was taken down. It was cut up into pieces and disposed of. Below are some photos of the work being done.

Courts 8-12 without the bubble

Courts 8-12 without the bubble

Power washing the channels in the grade beam

Power washing the channels in the grade beam

Repairing bubble connection to the equipment pad on Court 8

Repairing bubble connection to the equipment pad on Court 8

Cleaning Har Tru out of the air ducts

Cleaning Har Tru out of the air ducts

Oval Tennis' equipment

Oval Tennis’ equipment

Loosening Har Tru material on the surface of the courts

Loosening Har Tru material on the surface of the courts

Leveling the courts

Leveling the courts

More court leveling work

More court leveling work

LTC electricians

LTC electricians

Rob Kelton hard at work

Rob Kelton hard at work

Life at the Front Desk

Life at the Front Desk goes on

Excess material to be removed

Excess material to be removed

Tools of the trade

Tools of the trade

Tool for cutting the cement grade beam.

Tool for cutting the cement grade beam. Making way for a new, wider passageway.

View of the South Bubble and the 59th St. Bridge

View of the South Bubble and the 59th St. Bridge

It’s Wednesday, August 7. So far the weather has cooperated. Hopefully that will continue. The initial work of leveling the courts is almost complete. The new North Bubble is being delivered today. See below for a few more photos.

Rolling the courts

Rolling the courts

Bags of Har Tru for the courts

Bags of Har Tru for the courts

Making room for the new passageway

Making room for the new passageway

Work on the grade beam

Work on the grade beam

Unloading the new bubble. All the way from Canada!

Unloading the new bubble. All the way from Canada!

Lifting the bubble off the truck

Lifting the bubble off the truck

Sergio and Rob of EAMCO

Sergio and Rob of EAMCO

Bubbles wrapped up and successfully unloaded.

Bubbles wrapped up and successfully unloaded. Waiting to be installed

More bubble bundles

More bubble bundles

Thursday, August 8 and there was some rain overnight with more expected tonight and tomorrow. Oval Tennis was unable to work on the courts today. They will need to wait until the courts dry before they can complete the job of leveling the courts.

Puddles on the courts from the rain overnight

Puddles on the courts from the rain overnight

Stacked up behind the courts is insulation to go in the liner of the bubble

Stacked up behind the courts is insulation to go in the liner of the bubble

Below is a step by step photo documentary of the bubble being moved from the curb near the Tram to its resting place on the courts. This is one of two bundles which will be the North Bubble. This bundle weighs 6500 pounds. It took 12 men over an hour to move it into place.

The bundle on the fork lift awaiting its trek to the courts

The bundle on the fork lift awaiting its trek to the courts

Plywood to be placed under the wheels of the forklift

Plywood to be placed under the wheels of the fork lift

Beginning the trek across the Tram Plaza

Beginning the trek across the Tram Plaza

Slowly moving forward

Slowly moving forward

Expertly negotiating a turn while avoiding a tree

Expertly negotiating a turn while avoiding a tree

Getting closer to the courts

Getting closer to the courts

The bundle is almost ready to be set down next to the wall

The bundle is almost ready to be set down next to the wall

The bundle is on the ground next to the sidewalk

The bundle is on the ground next to the sidewalk

The bubble is being turned sideways on the pallet so that it could be lifted between the poles of the walkway canopy

The bubble has been turned sideways on the pallet so that it could be lifted between the poles of the walkway canopy

The bubble is emerging from under the canopy

The bubble is emerging from under the canopy

The bubble on the courts ready to be pushed into place

The bubble on the courts ready to be pushed into place

Positioning the fork lift to push bubble

Positioning the fork lift to push the bubble

Safely in place ready to be unwrapped and spread out on the courts

Safely in place ready to be unwrapped and spread out on the courts

It’s Monday, August 12 and we’re finally getting some dry weather. We lost two days over the weekend because the courts were very soft from the rain and no work could be done. The crew from Oval Tennis, actually two crews, are hard at work finishing the job of leveling the courts. The current plan is to put up the new North Bubble on Wednesday with the courts ready for play on Sunday or Monday.

Leveling courts and spreading material

Leveling courts and spreading material

Moving material

Moving material

More court leveling and rolling the courts

More court leveling and rolling the courts

Wednesday, August 14 and the courts are still too wet to put up the bubble. Tomorrow is the big day! Some work was done getting ready for the installation.

Revolving door installed on Court 12. This will be the entrance to the North Bubble until work is completed on the South Bubble.

Revolving door installed on Court 12. This will be the entrance to the North Bubble until work is completed on the South Bubble.

The courts ready for the bubble to go up

The courts ready for the bubble to go up

It’s Thursday, August 15 and it’s another beautiful day! We deserve some good weather. The crew was here at 7AM ready to begin the work of putting up the bubble. The bundles you see pictured above are unfolded and the bubbles are spread out over the courts. First, however, layers of plastic are laid down on the courts to keep the inside of the bubble clean. The crew then unfolds the bubble and pulls it into position. The bubble is then secured with boards which drop into the channel around the perimeter. Once this process is complete, the bubble can be inflated.

The crew pulling the bubble into place

The crew pulling the bubble into place

Here you see the layer of plastic laid down on the courts to protect the bubble

Here you see the layer of plastic laid down on the courts to protect the bubble

One very excited member of the crew!

One very excited member of the crew!

Pulling the NW corner of the bubble into place

Pulling the NW corner of the bubble into place

Securing the corner of the bubble by dropping boards into the channel

Securing the corner of the bubble by dropping boards into the channel

Pulling the SW corner of the bubble into place

Pulling the SW corner of the bubble into place

Securing another corner

Securing another corner

The bubble is up! At 12:30PM on Thursday the fans were turned on in the North Bubble. It took about an hour to fully inflate the bubble. There is much work to be done on the courts and with lights, divider curtains, etc. However, we have been assured that the courts will be ready for play on Monday, August 19.

Inside the new bubble with only the center pole lights

Inside the new bubble with only the center pole lights

Skip Hartman and Rob Kelton at a 7AM meeting

Skip Hartman and Rob Kelton at a 7AM meeting

Sergio installing a hang light on Court 8

Sergio installing a hang light on Court 8

The first hang light installed in the North Bubble

The first hang light installed in the North Bubble

Cleaning the liner where it got dirty during installation

Cleaning the liner where it got dirty during installation

Starting work on the courts

Starting work on the courts

A dried up puddle on Court 12. It will look perfect before Monday!

A dried up puddle on Court 12. It will look perfect before Monday!

It’s Monday, August 19 and the new North Bubble is open! It’s so bright that you might need sunglasses inside. The first players on the courts were the Day Campers at 9AM.

Inside the North Bubble looking towards Court 8

Inside the North Bubble looking towards Court 8

The first players entering through the revolving door on Court 12

The first players entering through the revolving door on Court 12

Planning strategy for the day's matches

Planning strategy for the day’s matches

Meanwhile in the South Bubble, work has started taking down lights, divider curtains, nets, poles, etc. The plan is to get all of the work done inside the bubble today and then lower the bubble on Tuesday.

Taking down the center light pole between Courts 1 and 2

Taking down the center light pole between Courts 1 and 2

Looking toward Court 7

Looking toward Court 7

Taking down lights on Court 4

Taking down lights on Court 4

As promised, it’s Tuesday, August 20 and the South Bubble is on the ground. The crews are busy cutting up the old bubble so it can be disposed of. Insulation has been removed from the liner and must also be disposed of. The pictures below were taken at just after 9AM. Everything you see was accomplished in about two hours. The crew is unbelievably efficient!

The view from the lounge looking at Courts 1-3. Great morning light with our new Eastern exposure!

The view from the lounge looking at Courts 1-3. Great morning light with our new Eastern exposure!

Pieces of the bubble on Court 1

Pieces of the bubble on Court 1

The lounge from Court 1. You can see the beam where the bubble attaches

The lounge windows from Court 1. You can see the beam where the bubble attaches

 

The NW Corner of Court 1 and the passageway to Court 10

The NW Corner of Court 1 and the passageway to Court 10

The bubble on the ground covering Courts 4-7

The bubble on the ground covering Courts 4-7

Starting the work of cutting up this section of the bubble

Starting the work of cutting up this section of the bubble

Detaching the bubble from the passageway to Court 10

Detaching the bubble from the passageway to Court 10

Victor carrying a piece of the bubble

Victor carrying a piece of the bubble

It’s Monday, August 26 at 3PM and the new South Bubble is up! Below are some photos from today and from the past few days. We expect to have some of the courts in the South Bubble ready for this weekend.

Removing the old passageway to Court 10

Removing the old passageway to Court 10

Loaded up on the power lift and ready to move

Loaded up on the power lift and ready to move

A few puddles on Courts 1-7

A few puddles on Courts 1-7

Work on the blower - a new shaft going into place

Work on the blower – a new shaft going into place

Robbie supervising while Sergio positions a new passageway

Robbie supervising while Sergio positions a new passageway

Final positioning of the new passageway to Court 10

Final positioning of the new passageway to Court 10

Working on top of the passageway to Court 8

Working on top of the passageway to Court 8

First light of day on the bubble

First light of day on the bubble

The new South Bubble just beginning to inflate

The new South Bubble just beginning to inflate

View from the Sportspark sidewalk

View from the Sportspark sidewalk

Starting to connect the bubble to the clubhouse

Starting to connect the bubble to the clubhouse

Connecting the bubble to the emergency door

Connecting the bubble to the emergency door on Court 7

The first look inside the new bubble

The first look inside the new bubble

Attaching the bubble near the lounge window

Attaching the bubble near the lounge window

General cleanup

General cleanup

Bubbles are delivered without openings for doors and passageways. Through a slit cut in the bubble you can see the new passageway.

Bubbles are delivered without openings for doors and passageways. Through a slit cut in the bubble, you can see the new passageway.

Center light poles ready to go up

Center light poles ready to go up

Attaching a hang light on Court 2

Attaching a hang light on Court 2

The center pole between Courts 2 & 3 with the mid-court lounge in the background

The center pole between Courts 2 & 3 with the mid-court lounge in the background

Tuesday, August 27 and work continues. Jose and Victor are getting the courts ready for play – patching, leveling, adding HarTru, etc. Hang lights are being attached all around the bubble.

Jose spreading material on Court 2

Jose spreading material on Court 2

We’re getting closer and closer to opening Courts 1-3. This reminds me of our years at Stadium Tennis Center in the Bronx when the bubbles went up in October and down again in April. You’d look at how much work needed to be done and think opening day would never happen. Slowly things would get done and then you’d be ready! It’s Wedensday, August 28 and things are looking really good! It’s raining outside, but that no longer matters. We think Courts 1-3 will be ready for the weekend and Courts 4-7 ready after Labor Day.

Nailing down lines on Court 1

Nailing down lines on Court 1

Rolls of insulation which will be inserted in the liner of the bubble

Rolls of insulation stacked on top of the mid-court lounge which will be inserted in the liner of the bubble

More rolls of insulation laid out on Courts 4 and 5

More rolls of insulation laid out on Courts 4 and 5

A center pole upright on Court 4

A center pole upright on Court 4

Cleaning the liner of the bubble

Cleaning the liner of the bubble

Jose rolling Court 1

Jose rolling Court 1

Courts 1-3 are virtually ready to go. The walkway curtain has been installed, the lights are all working, and all that is left are a few small jobs. These courts should be open on Saturday, August 31. They look great!!!!

The new walkway curtain behind Courts 1-3

The new walkway curtain behind Courts 1-3

Looking from Court 3 towards Court 1

Looking from Court 3 towards Court 1

From Court 3 towards the lounge

From Court 3 towards the lounge

Still work to be done on Courts 4-7

Still work to be done on Courts 4-7