San Jose youth center basketball court gets a makeover

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A San Jose youth center instrumental in keeping kids of the streets and out of trouble is getting a makeover.

For almost a half century, the Sherman Harris youth center has been a refuge for young people on the east side of San Jose. On Tuesday morning, a flooring contractor began removing the original tile floor that’s been there since the 8,000 square foot building was built.

The Center was founded back in January of 1969 by Reverend Sherman Harris, who’s now 91. He said inspiration from above led him to tackle this two-year building project to better the community.

“I thought that it didn’t have nothing. So I thought it would be best to start one. So we had this piece of land next to the church, and I thought of putting this to work,” said Rev. Harris.

Decades later, the original flooring was in disrepair. Contractor Jody Madson said once removal is complete, hardwood floors will be installed..

“With us installing three-quarter inch thick maple on top of it, it’ll make the ball bounce better. It’ll be just a much nicer environment to play in,” said Jody Madson of Madson Builders, Inc.

Madson isn’t charging for his time or materials. Terry Gallo with Rebuilding Together Silicon Valley said tech company Roche Sequencing Solutions is picking up the tab for the upgrades, which included painting the center’s ceiling back in February.

“This is going to be very impactful. The youth of this community want to come back and have nighttime basketball. Keep the kids off the streets. So this is gonna make a big difference for the children in this area,” said Gallo.

It’ll take between seven and 10 days to finish the work, and then there will be basketball once again.