May 18, 2015
Power Pairing

(SAN ANTONIO, TX) How do you take advantage of two courses (one that Lee Trevino had a hand in designing; the other by Tom Fazio) in close proximity of each other? Two developers are teaming up to build a $100 million master planned community on 880-plus acres that sits between the Golf Club of Texas and Briggs Ranch Golf Club.  San Antonio-based Brass Real Estate Funds has teamed with Convergence Communities of Wyoming and hopes to break ground in 14 to 18 months on the as yet unnamed community. The Golf Club of Texas, currently undergoing a $3.5 million renovation, had been shuttered for a few years. Briggs Ranch Club, originally developed in 2001 by a group including Gil Hodge, Buddy Cook and Bill Roger, came under new management a year ago. According to the San Antonio Express-News the community to built between the two courses will “consist of five to eight subdivisions, with 2,200 to 3,000 houses; 600 to 900 apartments; about 500,000 square feet of retail space; and 250,000 square feet of office space.”

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May 15, 2015
A Boost for Women’s Golf

(ARDEN, NC) Talk about the ultimate booster club. The Cliffs Clubs and its members are providing start-up support for the University of North Carolina at Asheville to help create the university’s first women’s golf program. In addition to significant funding from The Cliffs Clubs, The Cliffs at Walnut Cove’s Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course will serve as a primary practice facility for the team. The community’s members and employees have been a strong source of support for the university, not only assisting with the formation of the women’s golf program, but providing a mentorship program for student-athletes, and providing fundraising and donor support. Women’s golf will become UNC Asheville’s ninth women’s sport and 16th NCAA Division I athletic program. The Bulldogs’ first season will begin in the 2016-17 academic year.

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May 13, 2015
Living Green in the Desert

(RIO VERDE, AZ) Yes, it is possible to live green in the desert. But it takes planning and commitment. Under the guidance of the Audubon International Sustainable Communities program, the folks at Rio Verde Community – the award-winning resort style residential development northeast of Scottsdale – are leading the way out West. They become the first Certified Sustainable Community west of the Mississippi River and fifth overall in the U.S. Their community-driven Long Term Sustainability Plan focuses on 15 areas, including wildlife conservation and habitat enhancement, water conservation, energy efficiency, health and transportation. Rio Verde’s implemented accomplishments include solar panels ion the community center that serve 25 percent of the building’s average energy demand, 15 acres of turf on the golf courses naturalized to desert landscaping to reduce water and maintenance requirements, more than 3 tons of citrus from residents’ trees annually donated to local food banks, and an annual educational event on living green that drew more than 100 residents. Looks like they’ve earned their “verde” moniker.

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May 11, 2015
Noble Experiment

(NEW ORLEANS, LA) Affordable housing and golf courses may seem like strange bedfellows, but in New Orleans a new model is bringing the two together. According to The Times-Picayune, “when City Park's new championship course and golf complex is fully operating, as much as 45 percent of its profits will go to the Bayou District Foundation, a nonprofit that has steered a transformation of the troubled St. Bernard public housing into a mixed-income community in the years since Hurricane Katrina.” The Bayou District Foundation is taking a cue from Atlanta’s East Lake Golf Club, which turned a crime-riddled community into one that has 542 mixed-income townhouses, duplexes and apartments, a charter school, a nine-hole public golf course, an urban garden, a YMCA and early education facilities.  The championship golf course at Park City is expected to open in late 2016 or early 2017. 

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May 08, 2015
A Resort Rises in the Desert

(LA QUINTA, CA) The drought in California has reached biblical proportions and has golf courses struggling for ways to remain viable without being a drain on the dwindling supply of water. Despite those concerns, SilverRock Resort has been given the go-ahead to proceed on a $420 million expansion. It will be the first large-scale golf course resort built in the Coachella Valley in almost three decades, according to the Palm Springs Desert Sun. The expansion is to include a luxury hotel tucked against the mountain overlooking the Arnold Palmer golf course, another nearby lifestyle hotel, a convention center, promenade of shops and retail, a mini-Riverwalk, high-end camping, residential units, hiking trails and a public park. Three holes at the Arnold Palmer golf course will be relocated to accommodate the luxury hotel. Work is set to begin in 2016.

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