What are you doing about the Binks Forest Golf Course? There was a lot of discussion about Wellington buying it to make it our municipal golf course. It seemed it even came down to how much.
I applaud what you voted for in the last few years to improve our village; most recently, the new tennis courts and the upcoming senior center.
The Binks Forest Golf Course needs help. It is not up to the standards that golfers expect to play on. So, let me tell you what we would get for our money.
Golf architects Johnny Miller and Gene Bates built a unique golf course on 220 acres, full of majestic pines that guard tree-lined fairways. It was voted a top 75 Public Golf Course by Golf Digest, and it was good enough to host a PGA event, which Fred Couples and Mike Donald won.
The 30,000-square-foot banquet facility was completely renovated in 2007. It has a large outside pool, fitness center, men’s and ladies locker rooms, showers and a ballroom that seats up to 300.
The Binks golf course is our community; it includes five separate HOA developments. The Binks Preserve has 264 homes. Binks Estates has 109 homes. Hidden Creek has 99 homes. Brindlewood has 69 homes. Pine Trace has 41 homes. That’s a total of 582 homes that make up our community. Another 90 homes will be built soon, across the street from the clubhouse. The Binks Forest community is one of the best in the Village of Wellington.
What will become of the Binks Forest Golf Course? There have been many meetings and discussions, but to date, no conclusions. The price to buy the property and the costs to maintain it are issues. The golf course is deed restrictive. It must remain so in perpetuity, or it could become a park, if more than 50 percent of the village residents vote that way. The village would then be responsible for maintaining the property.
Cost is a bottle neck. The course is losing money now. The conditions are not very good, which is why the play is so low. But it could be profitable as a municipal course, like Okeeheelee, if we followed that course’s lead.
Our village has extensive properties of ball fields, pools, parks, trails, play grounds and much more. Wellington is wonderful at bringing things to our village, and what they have given us is always first class.
Money is important, but it is not everything. When this council wanted to build something, you did it. Recent examples are the tennis facility and the senior citizens building. They both went over budget.
As Vice Mayor John Greene said, “A golf course could be an amenity that offers real value to the village.”
Closing the Binks Forest course would see a major decline in property values for this community. It is up to this council to decide the golf course’s future. Let’s hope you make the right decision. It will be in perpetuity!
Morley Alperstein, Wellington
Editor’s note: Mr. Alperstein is the president of the Binks Estates Homeowners’ Association. He wrote this letter on behalf of several Binks Forest area HOA leaders.