A San Francisco couple seeking the sale of their $36 million home lost a potential buyer due to the noise from a nearby public pickleball court, their real estate agent told The Standard. The home has a pickleball court in its yard.
Holly Peterson, who owns the home with her venture capitalist husband, Karl Peterson, then started a petition on Thursday to have the nearby Presidio Wall public pickleball courts environmentally assessed due to the noise. Peterson did not respond to requests for comment.
“The endless racket [from the pickleball games] threatens the fragile ecosystem and our community's prestige,” the petition said. “This isn't just about us—it's about preserving nature for future generations.”
The petition called for “an immediate stop to pickleball” on the Presidio Wall courts and a “rigorous Environment Impact Report” to assess the noise’s impact on the park surroundings.
Steve Mavromihalis, the Peterson’s Compass real estate agent, said the couple are “pickleball lovers,” evidenced by having their own court. However, they had issues with the dawn-to-dusk pickleball games at Presidio Wall’s 12 courts. They said local residents were never made aware of the courts or the impacts of the noise.
Co-petitioner Mary Tesluk said she is working with Peterson and city officials “on a reasonable solution that considers everyone’s well-being and looks out for [the Presidio’s] wildlife.”
A spokesperson with San Francisco Recreation and Parks said city officials are working on a solution with Presidio Heights residents and pickleball players, and that "these neighborhood conflicts are as old as public recreation itself."
Nancy Jones was playing pickleball with friends when The Standard visited Tuesday and said the sport offers an accessible, outdoor activity for all people, regardless of their background.
“To take away a free outdoor recreational activity for people who can’t afford to join a private club––what are people without money supposed to do?” Jones said.
Jack Vincent, a man in his 60s who plays pickleball five days a week at the Presidio Wall courts, said he empathizes with local residents who are annoyed by the noise. However, he added that the neighbors willingly bought property by a park and should’ve expected the accompanying noise.
Vincent disagreed with the notion that pickleball was driving property values down and said that there are potential buyers that would consider playing pickleball and living close to a park as a positive. Home sales and sale prices for San Francisco’s ultra-expensive homes have taken a steep dive since the beginning of the year.
Mary Hickey, a frequenter of the Presidio Wall courts, said she hopes to work out a compromise with frustrated residents.
Hickey is an ambassador for USA Pickleball, the sport’s governing body, and said one potential solution would be to install sound-reducing acoustic fences around the courts. She added that she’s hoping to facilitate conversations with neighbors and city officials about this idea.
The petition later closed after The Standard reached out to Tesluk, a high-flying design executive. It was listed as open again on Wednesday and had almost reached its 100 signature goal by publication time.