By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities
A monthly roundup of news from golf communities across the U.S.
Three Brevard County-owned golf courses prepare to change hands
Two groups are in the process of taking over the three Brevard County-owned golf courses — The Savannahs on Merritt Island, The Habitat in Grant-Valkaria and Spessard Holland, which is south of Melbourne Beach.
It’s part of the effort by county government to get out of the golf course business, once and for all. County commissioners have been wanting to do so for a long time, and these two deals will enable that to happen this summer.
Meanwhile, the county has settled a breach-of-contract lawsuit it filed against the management company that previously operated the three courses.
Brevard County is arranging to privatize three of its public golf courses, with HOAs picking up part or all of the costs of future maintenance and operation. The
Savannahs is proposed to receive partial funding and low interest financing through a newly established Community Development District. The CDD will lease the golf course from the HOA, and a private company will manage the course and country club.
A private nonprofit organization, Golf Brevard, will assume management and operation of Habitat and Spessard Holland, with a head start from the County, by way of a so-called ‘transitional fund.’
The agreements follow the premature departure of Integrity Golf, LLC, the company that was contracted to manage all three course for ten years. Integrity Golf decided to breach its ten-year contract with the County after less than two years, because the golf course was losing money. A legal settlement is in the works.
Judge orders course owners to operate golf course, not build houses
The judge in the Ahwatukee Lakes Golf Course case on Friday ordered a “mandatory injunction requiring the owner of the Ahwatukee Lakes Golf Course property to operate a golf course on the property” as required by the 1992 CC&Rs.
Judge John R. Hannah Jr. issued the “minute entry” on Friday. Two area homeowners, Linda Swain and Eileen Breslin brought the suit against The True Life Companies and other developers to stop them from converting the land to housing. Breslin and Swain asserted that converting the course violated the deed restriction on the property and the judge agreed.
A minute entry sets forth the court’s thoughts, opinions and rulings on the legal arguments.
In a statement issued Sunday, Swain and Breslin called the ruling a “victory.”
True Life had proposed turning the golf course into a working farm-to-table agrihood, but couldn’t get enough support from current homeowners. When that plan didn’t fly, True Life proposed reducing the size of the golf course and building additional new homes on part of the land. The homeowners’ group objected, filing a suit for injunction. Ultimately the judge denied a proposal to build homes, because the CC&Rs require operation as a golf course or some other compatible use. Read the Judge’s ruling, which appears at the bottom of the news release linked above.
Andover Golf Club closed. It will soon be owned by homeowners around it.
May 31, 2018 05:43 PM
Updated June 01, 2018 03:11 PM
Whitaker Bank has agreed to sell the now defunct Andover Golf and Country Club to a consortium of neighborhood associations that surround the troubled golf course whose fate has been in question for more than a year.
The bank took control of the golf course in February 2017 after it went bankrupt and closed its doors. In April 2017, the bank purchased the property for $2.9 million.
But many neighborhoods in that area were concerned about the future of the course and the potential loss of green space. The bank and the homeowners group called the Alliance of Andover Homeowners Associations announced Thursday afternoon that after months of negotiations they have come to a tentative deal to sell the course to the homeowner associations.
Read more here:
An alliance of six HOAs organizes and proposes to purchase the bankrupt Andover Golf Course, to prevent the land from being sold to another developer. The individual HOAs still have to vote on whether or not to approve the agreement. Details of the purchase price and future plans for the land are not yet publicized.
Developers one step closer to building more homes in Shadow Ridge Country Club community
The Omaha City Council voted unanimously Tuesday afternoon to give developers the green light to continue efforts to build 28 homes in the Shadow Ridge Golf Course community near 192nd and Pacific streets.
Taylor Barth, KETV7
Updated: 10:26 PM CDT May 22, 2018
OMAHA, Neb. —
The Omaha City Council voted unanimously Tuesday afternoon to give developers the green light to continue efforts to build 28 homes in the Shadow Ridge Golf Course community near 192nd and Pacific streets. It’s a vote that’s disappointing to some homeowners in the neighborhood, but they say their fight is far from over.
Jennifer Campbell lives in the Ridges neighborhood. She’s been fighting the proposals since January and said the council’s vote didn’t come as a surprise.
We were told that it would get rubber-stamped through zoning board and City Council,” Campbell said.
She was one of three people who live in the neighborhood that spoke in opposition of the project at Tuesday’s council meeting.
The Shanahan family, who owns and manages the Shadow Ridge Golf Course and Country Club, are co-developers of the proposed project. Lanoha Development is also a co-developer. With the council’s approval, they’re now one step closer to building nearly 30, million-dollar homes on 8.67 acres of land in the Shadow Ridge Golf Course community. The development would be called the Escape at Shadow Ridge.
Read more (Video):
The owner of the golf course and country club is working with a co-developer, with plans to build 28 villa homes priced around $1 million apiece. The homes will impact part of the driving range, and won’t affect the golf course. However, existing homeowners object to building homes anywhere on golf course property, and they threaten a lawsuit if the project passes the final stage of approval. Homeowners suspect that building 28 homes is just the start of a larger plan to redevelop the entire golf course.
Vellano golf course shuts down
Posted: Saturday, May 19, 2018 8:00 am
By Marianne Napoles
The Vellano Golf Course in Chino Hills was shut down without warning on May 10, less than 24 hours after members of the homeowners’ association informed their board they did not want residential development on the golf course.
“We’ve joined the ranks of communities that have been abused by Western Golf Properties,” said Michael Konrad, president of the homeowners’ association. “We were told they would close the golf course if we did not support their desires.”
Western Golf Properties (WGP) chief executive officer Bobby Heath said the golf course has been losing money for many years and he offered several proposals to the association to make it more financially viable.
“The demand for golf is down, revenues are down, expenses such as the cost of water is up, and there is a massive oversupply of golf courses,” he said. “For the last 10 years, more golf courses have closed than opened.”
Same old story — golf course was losing money, original owner sold the land to a new owner, new owner, WPG, approached HOA with proposals to build either condos or homes, and the HOA rejected both options. WPG abruptly closed the golf course.
The course is only 12 years old.
Homeowners say WPG has a habit of acquiring golf courses, then shutting them down, and allowing them to become overgrown, in order to manipulate HOA homeowners to agree to a change in zoning for residential construction.
Meadows community association and country club come to an agreement
Homeowners were concerned that if they didn’t invest in the country club, a hostile investor or the lender would seize the property, increasing the chances of redevelopment and loss of green space.