Should City Save The Only Boca 18 Hole Public Golf Course?

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As the building boom continues in South Florida, residents are taking notice of the impact on their way of life.  Depending on your point of view, or your location, this can be a good thing or a bad thing.  For a number of years, the golf course known as Ocean Breeze (formerly Boca Teeca) has had on-again, off-again discussions regarding the development of residential units.  Recently, BocaWatch received a copy of a letter sent to the financial institution which owns the property through default.  The letter comes from a concerned citizen who feels his family and neighbors are negatively impacted if the property is developed and offers an alternative.

 

Dear Chairman Stumpf,

Your bank has acquired a property that is an integral part of the Boca Teeca residential area.  Residents of this area would respectfully request that you consider donating this property to our community for maintaining the open space and recreational use of this property.  Considering the generous community involvement that Wells Fargo has been a leader in the financial industry, this donation would be an important contribution to preserving the residential character of this community.

There is at least one local governmental agency that has been attempting to contact your company to investigate the possible acquisition of the property, the Greater Boca Raton Beach and Park District.  This local government agency would be an excellent fit for this property since they have a history of acquiring properties for the development and maintenance of recreational facilities within our community.

Your bank acquired this property via a long foreclosure process on a loan that was originated by Wachovia Bank over 10 years ago.  It is anticipated that your bank has long ago written off this loan which was secured by over 200 acres of open green space that has been operated as a golf course for approximately 50 years.   Your institution has done a fine job of being responsible owners of the property during the several year process of foreclosure.  After your bank retained a professional golf course manager the operations improved under the direction of the Arnold Palmer Golf Course Management Co.  Their professional operation increased the participation to over 300 users per day during the peak season which is an illustration of the importance of retaining this recreational facility in our community.

This property is the only public championship level golf course operating within the city of Boca Raton which continues to grow via several thousand new residential units that have been approved for development within our area.  Maintaining the recreational use of this property would be an important contribution to the community by Wells Fargo in their established efforts to reinvest within their communities.

Thank you for considering this request.

Respectfully,

Robert DuKate

 

 

5 COMMENTS

  1. Hi! My condo balcony overlooks this golf course. I love the view and every morning I love watching the birds walking across in search of their breakfast. Please don’t do anything to it that would spoil this for me and all the other residents that overlook this beautiful golf course view. Thank you.

  2. As a resident of East Boca I fully support keeping the golf course use of the Boca Teeca/Ocean Breeze golf courses. Too much development is not good for the future of Boca Raton. The present Boca City golf course is far from East Boca, located west of the Turnpike, and not convenient for those of us who live near to the ocean and the parks in East Boca. Most of the recent development in Boca has been in the east part of Boca and many more residents are expected to be living in the eastern part of Boca. It makes sense to preserve the Ocean Breeze golf courses rather than to increase the already high density rate of our city.

  3. Slowly but surely Boca Raton is being covered with concrete and pavement, with buildings getting higher and higher, bringing more and more people to our city. The city council should take immediate action to preserve this beautiful green space before none is left. Certainly a city owned and operated golf course would be a valuable asset to our citizens with no financial strain on our budget. Rather, it could be very profitable. Please consider it very seriously.

  4. In an effort to force development on the Boca Teeca community, we are being told golf courses are in decline, people are not golfing as much, the market is saturated with courses and golf courses are not financially viable. The fate of Boca Del Mar and the Boca Executive courses are pointed out to us constantly, as examples of what will happen to Ocean Breeze unless the property is sold to a developer for residential use.

    Ocean Breeze has been maintained on a shoestring for more than 6 years, as future plans have been uncertain. The course is in need of major renovation, but it is an amazing piece of property in an ideal location and it has good bones. The property has 27 holes of golf, a driving range, tennis courts, generous parking lots, easy access, a clubhouse and a now closed Inn and conference center. With the right investor and golf course designer/developer, who can recognize the potential, it could be a real gem for the City of Boca.

    Golf is as popular as ever and available to a much more diverse group of people. On a recent Thursday evening in May, the Ocean Breeze driving range was full. At least three-fourths of the people appeared to be under age 35. Many young men and women golf and a large number of retiring baby boomers are spending time and money at the courses, too. I want Ocean Breeze to be here for our grandchildren. A beautiful public golf course in the City of Boca would be a great asset, another housing development will be just that, another housing development.

    Please do not let Ocean Breeze go the way of other abandoned courses. Make it a success story which the community can look to with pride.

    Keep The Course!

  5. I agree with Robert DuKate, who wrote the letter. Boca Raton is rapidly being developed with concrete, buildings and pavement too quickly as there is money to be made for developers, lots of it. It is important to have the forsight to preserve green space before none is left. When I sit out on the condo balcony early in the morning or in the evening and listen to the birds and view the colors of the sky and greenery, I think how fortunate we are to still have this tranquil setting. What will be the appeal to move into new fancy condos if the entire area is build up, congested with traffic and densely populated.
    People are still playing golf and a public golf course would be a valuable asses to the community. Please do not let Ocean Breeze go the way of a housing development.

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