Mar 21, 2017 11:28 AM EDT
Bowling Green State University has announced closure of the school's Forrest Creason Golf Course. The course first opened as a nine-hole course in 1965 and will close due to reclining revenues by the end of this year.
The university spokesman, Dave Kielmeyer, said that the golf course averaged an $80,000 loss per year lately, a deficit that's projected to exceed $100,000 this year. After considering the cost to upgrade the course and the number of other accessible courses nearby, the university finally came to the decision. Kielmeyer pointed out the two other golf courses in Bowling Green City and another four are located within just 10 miles from Forrest Creason.
In 2016, total revenue at the golf course was $363,044, but the course operated at a loss of $119,404. The total of rounds played at the course has also fallen nearly half since 2010, from 22,089 to 11,576 in 2016. Senior rounds have been steady and increased slightly, the general public paid for 14,170 rounds in 2010 and only 3,648 last year according to Sentinel Tribune.
One of the reasons is an out-of-date clubhouse and a lack of banquet facilities, shelter facilities, irrigation and food services. Significant investments would have to be made to make the course more competitive said Keilmeyer. Even with significant upgrades the assessment showed that it would be tough to break even according to U.S. News.
There are four full-time employees at Forrest Creason and they will be given jobs in the campus operations department. The Bowling Green High School's girls golf team coach Paige Bulkeley said that the city's three courses each have a distinctly different style of play.
The university hired a consultant to review the course in response to Gov. John Kasich's Ohio Task Force on Affordability and Efficiency in Higher Education and House Bill 64. It required public universities to assess non-core assets to help identiry opportunities to lower costs for students.
The BGSU staff will work with Forrest Creason golf leagues and organizers of annual outings to assist in finding new locations for the 2018 season.
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