Golf Course Redesign
Need land for parks and housing? There are plenty of useless golf courses to repurpose. "We have land shortages in lots of our fast-growth cities and suburbs and we have an overabundance of golf courses.” In Akron, Ohio, a former golf course is turning into a park and being replanted with native trees. In Kent, Washington, a new mixed-use apartment complex is under construction on another former golf course. Near Palm Springs, a golf course is becoming a mixed-use “agrihood” with 75 acres of olive groves that will be used to produce olive oil. In Japan, a massive solar farm now sprawls over what used to be another 27-hole course. . . . Read full report here
America’s Golf Courses Are Burning. More than 800 golf courses have closed nationwide in the last decade, as operators grapple with declining interest in the sport and a glut of competition. Many of those shuttered courses were built on land proscribed from redevelopment by local zoning codes seeking to preserve open space . . . .
To some extent, all those course closures are simply a market correction: The golf industry went through a building boom in the 1990s and early 2000s, driven by developers who used golf courses as amenities to help sell homes. But the closures also reflect changing preferences for leisure activities. Participation in the sport is down 20 percent since 2003, according to data from the National Golf Foundation, and home builders have moved on to new types of recreational amenities, including man-made lakes and agricultural communities/ . . . . Read full report here
Golf: No Longer a Hole in One. The idea of building residential developments in the United States around golf courses is being rethought as demand for golf facilities continues to fade. The National Golf Foundation (NGF) reports that 2013 was the eighth-consecutive year that golf course closures outpaced openings . . . . Read full report here
Could Placemaking Become the New Golf? Repurposing Obsolete Courses. Once-flourishing fairways, greens, and clubhouses are being decommissioned all over the place, leaving communities with empty land, sometimes contaminated from years of intensive chemical applications designed to maintain greens and fairways in an artificially pristine condition. . . . Read full report here
When Golf Course Closures are Driven by Higher and Better Uses
As supply and demand of golf courses continues to self-balance, some owners are taking advantage of the current real estate market—by choosing to sell. From 1986 to 2005, USA golf industry experienced its largest building boom, as almost 5,000 new courses were opened within that time frame. Such exponential growth simply could not continue forever. As expected, openings have declined sharply over the past 12 years, with only 492 new courses opening since the boom ended. . Read full report here