Event to begin at 10 a.m.
The public is invited to attend a groundbreaking ceremony at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 4, to kick off the restoration and renovation of the City of Sarasota’s historic municipal golf course, Bobby Jones Golf Club, the city has announced.
The facility is located at 1000 Circus Blvd.
The parking lot and adjacent event area will temporarily reopen to the public for the ceremony, with staff on site to direct attendees, a news release explains. “Footwear suitable for navigating grass/dirt is recommended.”
“The ceremony will take place near the #1 tee of the former American Course, which will become a beautiful green space just south of the new #10 tee with the restoration of the Donald Ross course,” the release adds. City leaders, stakeholders and the golf course architect will be in attendance on March 4, the release notes.
In addition to the Donald Ross course restoration, a new 9-hole adjustable course will be constructed, as well as a player development center, a large driving range, a short-game practice area and a clubhouse featuring a restaurant, the release points out.
“The restored Donald Ross course is expected to open to the public for play as soon as November. The new 9-hole adjustable course is projected to be finished in January 2023,” the release adds.
“Over a span of years, we as a community gave careful consideration on what is to come of Bobby Jones,” said Mayor Erik Arroyo in the release. “Now, in fewer than two months since approval, we will be poised to bolster this precious asset while ensuring the entire land is conserved as recreational green space forever. This indeed will be a historic day for Sarasota and posterity,” Arroyo added in the release.
In partnership with the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast, a conservation easement has been placed on the 261-acre Bobby Jones land, protecting the city-owned property in perpetuity.
“We’re ready to move forward and renovate Bobby Jones,” said City Manager Marlon Brown in the release. “Thank you to residents and devoted golfers who were engaged over the years and championed this amazing recreational, green urban space that now is conserved in perpetuity. The City Commission took bold action and unanimously showed it is committed to preserving this special space for generations to come,” Brown continued in the release. “Now we’re laser focused on getting shovels in the ground and reopening our municipal golf course as soon as possible.”
The City Commission approved up to $20 million for the golf course renovation. The Southwest Florida Water Management District authorized a $1.5-million grant for a wetlands and water quality improvement project on the site, which will provide the framework for a future nature park.
The Nature Trails at Bobby Jones closed in early February to accommodate crews conducting pre-construction work, the release points out.
For construction updates visit https://www.bobbyjonesgolfclub.com/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery.