Golden Gate golf course project delayed, needs millions of dollars to move forward

A multi-million dollar proposed project: delayed. A $29 million purchase last year is at a standstill after a builder says it needs millions to move forward.

David Marren has lived in the Par One neighborhood in Golden Gate for five years.

“We live in a very nice community,” said the Par One Home Owners Association president. “It’s welcoming.”

Why he moved there? “The golf course, of course, was a big part of the decision,” he said.

So when the plans for a new driving range, golf course and entertainment center were revealed for the old Golden Gate Golf Course property, the longtime golfer was excited.

“It would be an attraction for working-class people, to provide affordable golf,” Marren said.

But there’s now a hiccup in the plans. After the company chose to build the development, ClubCorp sent a letter to Collier County leaders asking for $7 million to replace the irrigation system.

Commissioner Burt Saunders called that a non-starter.

“He just asked that we continue working with all partners and we’re hoping to bring back a deal or somethin…a negotiated agreement with all the partners in a couple of weeks, or not,” explained the County Managers’ Office senior operations analyst, Geoff Willig.

Commissioners are now set to discuss the plan at their next meeting in two weeks. Marren says he’ll call Commissioner Saunders and push for the project.

“We’re hoping that it’ll happen,” Marren said. “We’re hoping that commissioners will see the light in terms of the good this will do the community,” and hope two weeks is enough for a deal to get done.

The county bought the old golf course last year and is working on two other possible developments on the property: affordable workforce housing and a veterans’ nursing home.

Reporter:Rachel Cox-Rosen
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