Tucson Considers New Uses For 5 Public Golf Courses

Published: Monday, August 14, 2017 - 9:46am

For the past decade, golf courses have felt a whiplash from the Great Recession. Here in Arizona, the greens maintenance and use of affluent water has sparked debate in Tucson over its 15 public golf courses.

Tucson's City Council began taking public input Friday on five of those courses, including the Fred Enke, Silverbell, El Rio and two 18-hole Randolph courses at Reid Park.

The last two are protected by deed restrictions and continue to be profitable, and federal laws limit what can be done to the El Rio and Silverbell courses.

So far, ideas have ranged from redevelopment for business and residential use, and even closure.

Tucson has 40 private and public golf courses, all facing declining use. The National Recreation and Parks Association calculated that's twice as many courses than the area can sustain.

If you like this story, Donate Now!