Fact or Myth? Golf courses are struggling across the country and particularly in Ottawa. Fewer people are golfing and the costs of maintaining courses keep going up.
This is a FACT but … another FACT is this
At its spring 2018 Annual General Meeting (AGM) ClubLink announced that the Kanata Golf and Country Club course had once again turned a profit. It was also awarded the “Best Maintained Golf Course” in the ClubLink portfolio. As one commentator put it: “It would appear that corporate greed, as opposed to profitability is the issue.”
Sherhols: Kanata Golf and Country Club is green space worth saving
Fact or Myth? The development proposed by Clublink is required to fulfill “much-needed” housing.
This is a MYTH … but this is a FACT
According to the City of Ottawa, over the next few years, over 9,000 homes are already planned for development towards the outer perimeter of Kanata North. This will represent a 68 per cent increase in residential growth. There is already great community concern as to how the City of Ottawa will provide the transportation and other infrastructure necessary to support this housing.
There is further concern that parachuting this ClubLink proposal into the completely developed and constricted core area of Kanata Lakes is beyond the abilities of that infrastructure. By design, this golf course is fully embedded in the residential community surrounding it and it does not have the luxury of tumbling into rural land as is typical for most tract golf courses in urban areas.
Fact or Myth ? The development of the golf course will be of “greater community benefit”.
This is a MYTH … and here are the FACTS
This open greenspace forms an essential part of our community and provides many less than obvious benefits .
Under the current agreement area residents have the right to access this greenspace outside of the period of the year when it is used as a golf course. Residents use this space for non-motorized winter sports including tobogganing, cross-country skiing, skating, as well as birdwatching and dog walking. The health and lifestyle benefits of easily accessible recreational space is hard to quantify.
More fundamentally, we must recognize that the unique design of the “garden community” over 50 years ago was instrumental in transforming Kanata North into Canada’s largest technology park. This was achieved despite world wide competition from other major cities and a climate which ensures we are the coldest capital in the world!
The 40 Percent Agreement has been a great part of that success. It governed the use of this shared open space, ensuring the development of a liveable community that continues to attract high tech professionals and their families to work and live and settle here.
Fact or Myth? Club link has a right to pursue “alternative uses” for the golf course property outright.
This is a MYTH … and her is the FACT
The legal agreement under which the land was purchased, known as The 40 Percent Agreement requires that the land be operated as a golf course “in perpetuity”. Development of the lands is only to be considered after a series of other options has been exhausted.
The key clauses Clauses 5 and 9 set out the following provisions for the golf course:
- 5(2) the owner of the course can only sell the course to a new owner if that new owner enters into an agreement with the city to operate the course in perpetuity as provided in the Agreement.
- 5(3) If the course owner receives an offer to buy the course the city is to be given the right of first refusal (the city can purchase for the same price).
- 5(4) Provides two conditions after which the owner is to convey the course free of cost to the city to operate:
- The owner wants to cease operating the course; and
- The owner cannot find any other person to purchase or operate the course
- 5(5) If the city refuses to accept the course the owner is free to make an application to the City to develop the land
- 9. If the city accepts the golf course but later the land is not used for recreation and natural environmental purposes, the land and buildings are to be returned to the owner (that gave the course to the city) for development