How Leawood plans to regulate pickleball noise in neighborhoods

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Leawood residents looking to build private sports courts in their backyard have new requirements to keep in mind.

At last week’s meeting, the Leawood Planning Commission approved an amendment to the city’s development ordinance adding new guidelines to the approval process for building new tennis or pickleball courts.

Complaints about pickleball noise led to this

  • The amendment follows multiple planning commission work sessions after residents began raising concerns about noise and bright lights coming from residential pickle ball courts last year.
  • The city explored several ways of addressing the problem, such as cutting back permitted court lighting hours and raising the minimum distance from neighboring property lines.
  • Before last week’s change, residential sports courts — both tennis and pickle ball — already required a special use permit if they had lighting.

The city now wants to require notifying neighbors

  • The amendment approved last week requires residents to notify any neighbors by mail within 200 feet that they want to build a sports court.
  • It also requires the court to be screened from neighbors by evergreen landscaping.
  • The midpoint of the court must also now be closer to the owner’s house than to any neighbor’s houses, with a minimum setback of 20 feet from all property lines.

The commission unanimously approved the new rules

  • That means the amendment heads next to the Leawood City Council for approval.
  • The city council will take it up for review at a later meeting.
  • If approved by the city council, then sports courts both with and without lighting will be subject to the new requirements.

Go deeper: Leawood may tighten rules over backyard sports courts following pickleball complaints

About the author

Lucie Krisman
Lucie Krisman

Hi! I’m Lucie Krisman, and I cover local business for the Johnson County Post.

I’m a native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, but have been living in Kansas since I moved here to attend KU, where I earned my degree in journalism. Prior to joining the Post, I did work for The Pitch, the Eudora Times, the North Dakota Newspaper Association and KTUL in Tulsa.