The only source SunCoast has provided to support their claims is the National Golf Foundation.
After reviewing the market claims by SunCoast including the National Golf Foundation reports and details around recent closures, we are left with more questions than answers.
When we contrast the statements of SunCoast against the National Golf Foundation, a very different picture is drawn.
National Golf Foundation
"The golf course industry continues to go through a period of natural correction, as expected, following a 20-year period of the most dramatic growth in the game’s history." (Article)
If the golf industry has "imploded" as SunCoast believes would it not negatively affect the proposed combined course? If the golf industry is not doing well, the combined course may not be built or if built, may not be able to stay in business. We may be left with huge apartment buildings and still no golf course. The assessments do not guarantee that the golf course is maintained and in business.
What are successful courses doing to remain profitable in this competitive market? What, specifically, has SunCoast tried to make the courses successful?
A SunCoast representative said the following about golf in our area:
"You can see it locally. Delta View has closed. Courses in Marin, Vacaville, Pleasanton have closed. It’s closing throughout California. It’s closing throughout the nation." (Video)
The below is what we know about each course mentioned.
Delta View, Pittsburg
Delta View is in Pittsburg and the city is exploring it’s option and trying to keep it alive.
"The reasons for the closure are still unclear."
San Geronimo Golf Course, Marin
"After one of the partners became ill, however, the push to sell increased. Ms. Kim said contrary to rumor, the course has been profitable and only operated in the red during winter months."
Green Tee Golf Club, Vacaville
The residents of this community face the same issue we do where the owners are attempting to develop the golf course land.
Sunol Valley Golf Course, Sunol (Pleasanton area)
Sunol Valley Golf Course was a 50 year old, 36-hole course.
"To compete, Sunol needed to be redesigned and updated, but that would be a huge capital expense for a complex that has seen its rounds plummeted..."
"I think there is a middle ground that includes an assessment district for residents bordering the golf course with better management coming from the city or a private operator."
"One additional note: nobody wanted the 85 acres used even partially for housing."
Roddy Ranch, Antioch
Not surprisingly, Roddy Ranch wasn't mentioned in SunCoast's list of recently closed courses.
With the closure of Roddy Ranch, a golf course 2.3 miles from Shadow Lakes, on August 11, 2016, there were more dedicated golfers seeking new golf memberships and less holes in our immediate area.
What did SunCoast do to capture those dedicated golfers? At this time Shadow Lakes had "been operating on a limited schedule for the past few months". It was a prime opportunity to re-open Shadow Lakes full time but that's not what happened.
It's also important to note that the closure of Roddy Ranch involved fraud, not too few players.
Shadow Lakes / Deer Ridge
Some rezone supporters often say that two courses cannot operate across from each other.
Here's an interesting quote by a SunCoast representative.
"They’re right across the road from each other, but they're very different. They look different, they play differently."
-Kevin Martin, SunCoast