Proposals for Austin PGA Courses Progress

City officials have made progress with plans to build two PGA-level golf courses on land at Walter E. Long Metropolitan Park. During Thursday’s Austin City Council meeting, council members cleared city staff to begin negotiations. The golf course project comes with an estimate $18-$25 million price tag. If approved, the measure would still need to return back to elected leaders for final approval, as reported by the Austin Monitor.

The Decker Lane Golf LLC, a group headed by Warren Hayes and Austin-area pro-golfer Joe Ogilvie, is spearheading the proposal. Currently, Decker Lane is offering to spend up to $25 million to convert more than 700 acres of parkland in an 18-hole golf course. The first of the two proposed courses could potentially open as early as 2018, with a second golf course planned to follow within the next 10 years.

The developers cited their confidence that the course, with its proximity to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, could be attractive for premier professional golf events.

The addition of the new 1,012-room JW Marriot Hotel, and the freshly funded 1,031-room Fairmont Hotel, will also help with the influx of visitors who go to such events. Events such as the Masters tend to have roughly 35,000-45,000 attendees.

Decker Lake Golf LLC Proposal:
— Finance and develop two world-class, environmentally sensitive golf courses to be completed in two phases.
— Phase One: an 18-hole championship golf course complete with a club house, meeting space, food service, a driving range and related amenities, will be designed by Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore
— Phase Two will begin five to 10 years after opening Phase One, and will include a second 18-hole golf course and other park amenities.
— The overall development plan calls for more trail connectivity and a golf short course learning center that features youth programming

Key terms of proposal:
— 50-year agreement with four 10-year extensions
— Revenue sharing ranging from 3 percent to 12 percent
— Public involvement, city code, and water conservation efforts must all be included in design/construction process

Source: City of Austin