The Killearn Homes Association, which represents approximately 3,800 homes in Killearn Estates in northeast Tallahassee, was told by the owner of the Killearn Country Club tonight at their monthly meeting that a major redevelopment of the golf club must happen for the club to survive.
Barton Tuck, the current owner, laid out the redevelopment plan and said “if we do nothing, Killearn can’t compete.”
The Killearn Country Club, once a destination for the wealthy and powerful of Tallahassee and home to a PGA stop for approximately 20 years, has fallen on hard times.
Mr. Tuck said that the club needs a $4-5 million renovation and will require all current structures to be torn down and replaced.
With financing such a project in the current economic environment an impossibility, Mr. Tuck told the board that the redevelopment plan calls for nine of the twenty-seven holes to be closed.
The plan is to close the “North Course” and turn holes one thru six into a conservation easement and rezone a portion of the remaining land, approximately 30 acres, into multi-family housing and sell to a developer for funds to renovate the country club.
The renovation of the club would result in a modern club house and amenities and the eventual renovation of the golf course itself.
Mr. Tuck, who lives in Greenville, South Carolina, said “I did not come down here to put a house in somebody’s backyard. No one will have a house in their backyard -but we must do something.”
He told the board he would a need a change in the restrictive covenants to move forward with plans and then dropped this bombshell.
If not changed, the current covenants, which end in 2021, will allow the owner of the club property at that time, to build single family homes on all of the property, approximately 200 acres, that makes up the entire 27 hole golf course.
Mr. Tuck said the original developer, JT Williams, was smart in that he built the fairways of the original eighteen holes wide enough to accommodate a road with room for single family homes on both sides.
Mr. Tuck said that a change in covenants to accommodate the redevelopment of the North Course could also extend the convents for the other eighteen holes pass 2021.
Mr. Tuck is the owner and president of Wingfield Golf. Wingfield Golf is located in Greenville, SC and currently manages 6 semi-private golf courses in North Carolina, Virginia and Mississippi.
Mr. Tuck has over 30 years experience in managing golf properties in the Southeast and has played an active role in the financing of over 50 golf properties. He has a BS degree from The University of North Carolina and was a licensed Certified Public Accountant in North and South Carolina, as well as a member of the American Institute of CPAs.