Municipal Golf Course's Fate TBD

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Area golfers will be keeping a close eye on February 14th's city council meeting in Bryan, where the council is expected to decide the fate of the municipal golf course.

The city already tried to partner with College Station, but didn't get a warm response. Now, they're left with either improving the land they're on now, or finding a new home.

The first option Bryan's council has explored is relocating the municipal golf course, then selling the current property.

"We had an appraisal done in 2001 at $1.6 million," said Bob Shultz, Bryan's internal auditor. "I'm reasonably certain we could sell it for some amount more, but I'm not sure how much more. If we get serious about that and that's an option we choose, we'll definitely have to have an appraisal done on it."

Two other options on the table involve major renovations, rearranging holes, replanting grass, and reworking irrigation. For one plan, along with the aforementioned work, the 10th hole along Villa Maria could be moved elsewhere to allow for commercial development near the course, adding even more costs to what would be a nearly $4 million tag. Selling the current property would cost between $6 and $11 million according to current estimates.

"I think we have a responsibility to our golfers to have a place for the golfer that's not a country club member to have a place for recreational pursuits," said John Blackburn, a special projects coordinator with the city.

"This is the one course in Bryan that doesn't require a membership to play at," Shultz said. "The golf course could make money, but it is really considered a park for citizens use.">

"We're hoping for a decision very soon so that we can move forward and meet the deadlines for planting grass," said Blackburn.

The council will either decide on one of the options, or ask for a feasibility study on the property, which would delay any project there until late this year or early next.

A fourth option for the course is only building a single maintenance building needed on the site.

The city may also face some decisions soon on the lake on the course. A regular state study of the dam for the lake show some potential problems. The city will soon begin exploring options, which could even include eliminating the lake all together.