The question about the squash court cost is one of if not THE most asked in discussions with clients and the answer is always the same: That depends! Comparable to trying to determine the cost for building a house, there are various cost drivers that determine the total cost of your squash court. These are also the factors that differentiate between a moderate court, a decent court and a great court.
What factors determine the overall cost of a squash court?
In principle, there are 5 factors:
– The type of building that will hold the court(s).
– The location of the facility (building)
– The number of courts and court layout,
– The technical details
– The service
Let’s look at these factors one by one, starting with the type of building available.
The type of building – what are the preferred options?
The first choice to be made when planning to build courts is its location. Sometimes, inexpensive rental space is available in former factories or storage facilities. A tricky factor with this option is often the available building height. It is recommended to have a building with a clear height of at least 5,7m. If the court is designated for leisure use only (no official tournament use), a lower height might be acceptable if the rest of the building conditions fit the desired profile.
The other factors are the walls of the building. An empty building with favorably placed building columns that allow for lots of free space and liberty in placing the courts is ideal. This gives the clients and their architects much more flexibility in terms of court positioning, amount of courts and placement of complimentary facilities such as changing rooms, bar, shop etc. The more flexibility there is, the better the optimization of pathways inside the center to maximize client time inside the building (for more info, please refer to ‘planning a squash centre‘)
While finding such used buildings and converting them into squash centers is often done in bigger metropolitan areas, finding THE perfect building in the perfect location more often than not requires the construction of an entirely new structure. This second option certainly has the big advantage that everything can be purpose built from the beginning including building height, layout and location. Dimensions can be adjusted to fit a certain court system from the beginning. ASB always recommend their clients to work with us from the design stage in order to check out available space and feasibility of the installation. You can find more info in our architect’s corner.
The location of the facility (building) – does the country make a difference?
Once you have determined the ideal building for you, whether it is new or an existing one, the next cost driver automatically comes into play: transport cost. The transport cost obviously depends on whether your center is located in Europe, where ASB would transport material to you via truck or whether your center is located outside of Europe. In this case, your material reaches you by container. The amount of trucks or containers and their costs finally depend on the third factor: the amount of courts and the court layout
The amount of courts and court layout – how is the number of court related to the layout?
By all means, the biggest cost driver is of course the amount of courts you would like to purchase and install. This factor requires a lengthier and more detailed explanation. A common mistake is the fact that people think if one court costs X, two courts must cost 2 times X and three courts 3 times X and so on. While this system might apply to other court manufacturers, at ASB it’s quite different. By using our independent wall systems, a side wall as well as front wall can be used on both sides. To give an example: for 2 courts in a row, at ASB, the client does not require 2 front walls and 4 side walls. Only 2 front walls and 3 side walls are required, as the middle “side wall is in use to both court (left and right). This principle applies for all ASB System100 installations and consequently, the cost per court is substantially reduced the more courts are installed beside each other. For example: A bank of 5 courts in a row requires only 6 sidewalls (not 10). The other factor that reduces the cost per court are transport costs. Transport cost for one squash court is typically the same as for 3 squash courts.
The technical details – what makes a squash court really great?
In other words: what factors differentiate the quality and therefore the price of a traditional squash court? The first part is the squash court surface. The most common squash wall surfaces are cement, plaster, wood or glass. The type of squash court wall surface chosen is crucial for pricing. While cement, plaster and panel courts can have a lower purchase price, their playing surface is quickly compromised due to plaster having to be consistently patched or panels with unfinished joints warping out of shape. Subsequently the overall investment balloons and ends up being an expensive choice.
ASB with its pre-fabricated walls without any visible joints and gaps are more sophisticated in their production. Better playing characteristics, longevity of the walls and sound insulation are just 3 of the many advantages of such a system. As a consequence, this higher quality comes with a higher initial buying price but significantly lower maintenance costs over the lifespan of the courts.
The same applies for the back wall. Glass has become the standard for back walls to increase visibility of the sport. But even with glass back walls there are further differences that influence pricing. Most glass back walls require glass fins that are mounted in a 90° angle to the main glass back wall. The door and the glass fins are connected with the glass back wall by brackets or fittings. These brackets and fittings are either made of plastic, steel or aluminum. Further info can be found here: http://asbsquash.com/faq/squash-court-door/
While plastic is certainly the cheapest option, it is also the option that wears out the quickest leading to loose connections and even glass breakage. Steel is rather bulky and heavy but more resistant. The ideal combination of both aforementioned materials is aluminum. It’s light and resistant. However, it is also more costly than the other two materials.
Last but not least, the floor is another major cost factor. The material normally used for squash court floors is wood. There are two main options: a solid floor and an engineered floor. Both floors have advantages and disadvantages. Fully sprung floors are traditionally the first choice in Commonwealth Nations. A newer development is the use of engineered parquet floors that offer more flexibility and are gentler to the knees and ankles of the players. More info can be found here: http://asbsquash.com/products/squash-floor-sportsfloor/
The service – what is included in the overall price?
Besides squash court quality, the last important cost driver is installation service. In other words: what is included in the squash court price? What do I need to look out for? While some companies feed the clients hidden additional costs step by step, often leading to unpleasant monetary surprises and substantial additional costs after they have sold the project, ASB Squash is following a different, very customer-oriented approach. If not stated otherwise and particularly requested by the client, ASB is not only providing transport and all material to install the squash court. ASB is also providing a complete installation crew. This installation cost not only includes travel cost, accommodation, allowance but also all machinery to unload the material off the truck or container as well as machinery required for the installation of the squash courts. The client does not have to organize and rent machines, accommodation or anything else for that matter. It’s a care-free package for the client once he has decided for ASB.
Squash court cost conclusion
In conclusion, each project has to be evaluated separately to determine the exact price per court however it has become clear that there are 5 important factors that will determine the total cost of purchasing and placing a squash court. All of these factors indicate an estimated price of between 40.000 and 55.000 EURO per court.