Public Forum to Be Held on the Future of the Golf Course

The Golf Course Advisory Committee is asking for input at a listening session on April 9.

The Golf Course Advisory Committee is hosting an open forum at 6:30 p.m., April 9. The forum is a listening session for the committee and an opportunity for members of the Dartmouth community to share comments about the future of Dartmouth’s golf course.

The forum is scheduled to be held in room in room B03 in Moore Hall. The location is subject to change and can be confirmed by checking the committee website next week.

The advisory committee was formed in early February to explore a variety of scenarios for the College-owned and operated golf course, which has been losing an average of nearly $600,000 a year for the past four years, due in part to shrinking membership.

To date, the committee has met three times to review the history of improvements and repair at the site; study the course layout relative to land boundaries, zoning, wetlands, and interactions with neighbors; and discuss the opportunities and challenges for improving the course’s current condition. A key focus for the group is how plans might affect mixed recreational use of the land, so that, in addition to golfers, changes could address the needs of hikers, runners, and others who use Pine Park and the golf course.

At the April 9 forum, the committee hopes to hear community concerns and ideas about three possible scenarios for the golf course’s future, which the committee has been asked to evaluate:

Scenario 1: Continued operation of the 18-hole course, supported by dues, greens fees, and other current revenue, with identified steps to reduce costs and limit financial burden on the College.

Scenario 2: Operation of a reconfigured 18-hole course that would reduce the financial burden on the College by increasing dues and greens fees and finding new sources of revenue from operation changes. Capital investment in this scenario would be non-College operating investments.

Scenario 3: Ending operation of the course as an 18-hole course, construction of an indoor golf practice facility, and analysis of options for funding the practice facility and appropriate grounds maintenance.

In addition to the open forum, the community is encouraged to email comments to the committee at [email protected]. Committee reports, progress updates, and dates for community forums can be found at the advisory committee’s website.

The committee will give its final report recommending a course of action to President Phil Hanlon ’77 in the spring, and the board of trustees will consider it in June.

Hannah Silverstein can be reached at [email protected].