Watch CBS News

Edgewood residents worried about noise from pickleball courts

Pickleball controversy brewing in Edgewood
Pickleball controversy brewing in Edgewood 02:54

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — There is a pickleball controversy brewing in Edgewood. 

Some of the newest pickleball courts in town is coming to a tree-lined street in Edgewood. 

"If you came in buying a house and there were 16 people playing across the street, it's not a peaceful, quiet neighborhood anymore," Louise DeRiso said.

DeRiso has watched as crews prep the courts, which will be 50 feet from her front porch. She did not think much at first, but a recent conversation has her panicked. 

"It wasn't until a week ago when I told my friend and she said, 'Oh, my brother's place in Texas just put that in across his house and it drives him crazy,'" DeRiso said.

A quick search online churns out millions of hits of articles with one consensus: America's fastest-growing sport has a noise problem. 

"I started digging and found city after city after borough throughout the country having these same issues," DeRiso said.

She learned the plastic ball and fiberglass paddle produce a sound louder than tennis. She worries about what it means for the nearly 70 homeowners, she says, within earshot. 

"Go play pickleball, God bless you, but not across the street from where I live," Edgewood resident Sharon Borovetz said.

Since the Edgewood courts are not done yet, KDKA-TV stopped by Schenley Oval and used a decibel reading app. It read decibels in the 60s and 70s about 50 feet from the action. The suggested decibel noise level in most residential neighborhoods is 55.

Some pickleballers agreed that it is too loud, but they added that it is all about what you are used to. 

"It's relative to what you have," Oakland resident Michael Sobkowiak said. "Is it a busy road? ... Is it a quiet neighborhood?" 

"I lived next to a volunteer fire station, and when the whistle went off it was unnerving," Squirrel Hill resident Randi Coffey said. "But you get used to it." 

DeRiso said she hopes her concerns can at least educate people to ask questions and research sooner.   

"The city of Pittsburgh has 14 (courts), but they're in Schenley Park, big parks with the 500 feet distance," she said. 

DeRiso said she is working with a Carnegie Mellon University engineer to figure out if putting up sound barriers could help.     

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.