SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - What’s going to happen to the Bobby Jones Golf Course in Sarasota? That has yet to be decided.
City commissioners looked at a presentation Tuesday afternoon examining two options to renovate and upgrade the 300-acre property. It’s a golf course that has been around for nearly a hundred years and many say it has seen better days. Both 10-year business plans would transform all 45 holes at a cost of around 17 million dollars.
“I’m very much in support of it; Bobby Jones was one of the first courses I played when I moved here 26 years ago. I was very enthralled about the history of the course and how much it has been part of Sarasota and Sarasota’s history,” said Keith Miller, a supporter of the plans.
After a lengthy debate, all five commissioners voted in favor of continuing to look at other options before making a final decision.
There’s discussion lead by commissioner Hagen Brody of a scaled down version of the plan that would feature a premier 18-hole or 27-hole golf course, with possibly a park or walking trails.
Commissioners say they will also look into talking with the Conservation Foundation about plans to preserve the land.
People in opposition of the plans and those in favor of it had a chance to have their voices heard. Sarasota resident Martin Hyde believes the current plans would not be financially smart.
“Only nine percent of the people who play there are city residents," said Hyde. "Eighteen holes would accommodate anything the city would have an obligation for, the rest of it maybe we can make better use of the land, a preserve, maybe we can get some affordable housing out of it, but we just can’t afford 45 holes,” said Hyde.
A date to further discuss the Bobby Jones Golf Course has yet to be set.