Interesting news this week, that appeared on the Now on the Tee blog, that St. Catharines Golf and Country Club has shot down any notion of moving. The club had an offer from a developer to sell their land and move 10 minutes away. The vote was just about whether to even look into moving, and the club membership shot it down 80-20.
Here’s my previous post on the issue, giving the background.
Seems to me to be incredibly short sighted during a time when private clubs are struggling. Truthfully, St. Catharines is a very average golf course that has been dramatically altered over the years due to road works. It has a range in the middle of the property that forces the use of hideous nets (that don’t really keep balls in even then), and an 18th hole that runs along the highway — a lawsuit just waiting to happen. That the members would not even investigate a move when they are arguably the fourth or fifth best course in the area — well behind the likes of Lookout Point, Cherryhill, Whirlpool, Hunters Pointe (now Lochness Links) — seems to be a recipe for disaster.
Interestingly, the development group that was interested in the project was the same that was behind the questionable Thundering Waters, which may have turned the club away from the option of moving as well. Additionally, the Thundering Waters group wanted St. Catharines to use golf designer Boris Danoff (Thundering Waters, Royal Ontario), an architect who is yet to demonstrate the ability to create a strong golf course. Danoff wouldn’t exactly instill confidence in me as a member, though Ian Andrew had a design he had shown club members as well. One comment on the Now on the Tee blog called Andrew’s design “sick.” And that, I think, was meant in youth-speak as “very good.”
Here is the story from the St. Catharines Standard on the subject. Note it is Ian Andrew, not Andrews.
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What a shame the club wasn’t able to give Ian a shot. I have not played St. Catherines so it’s hard for me to pass judgement, but I know your tastes and have no doubts that a solo Andrew design would be better than what they have.
If the golf course had a notable (and intact) design history then maybe they made the right decision, but as I understand it, that is not the case.
Maybe, the members read the “unpublished” history of the York Downs move.
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