Monday, September 21, 2015

Oro Valley Plans Big Changes At Town Owned Pusch View Golf Course

The Town Of Oro Valley presented major changes coming to its Pusch View 9-hole golf course. Troon, the golf management company that runs the three Oro Valley owned golf courses, discussed these changes at a public hearing on September 17 at the Tucson El Conquistador Country Hotel and Resort. Attending as members of the audience were Town Manager Greg Caton and council members Hornat, Snider and Waters. Shirl Lamonna, Oro Valley town council candidate, also attended.

 Troon wants to make golf "mischievous" to attract new players
According to Rob DeMore, Vice President of Troon, the changes are designed to "attract children, new golfers, non golfers, and those seeking entertainment in a unique setting." Dubbed "Pusch X9" the course will become a "...mischievous blend of color, sports, music, food, and drink not seen in any golf experience in Southern Arizona."

According to DeMore, whose remarks you can view at right, changes will includes a larger cup on each putting green in addition to the traditional cup; electric scooters to whisk a player from hole to hole; and new forms of golf such as glow stick golf and foot golf. An "anything goes" dress code will be encouraged.

DeMore mentioned changes occurring at the two other Oro Valley-owned golf courses. These are increased food and beverage offerings, and golf driving range improvements.

DeMore said that changes are being made to offer a better fiscal return. He did not provide any details on that. Oro Valley-owned golf courses have lost almost $1.4 million in just the first few months of operation. Substantial added losses are foreseen this year.

Most of the 65 meeting attendees were senior adults who live on the Pusch View golf course. The general public, though paying for this golf course through an increase sales tax, did not attend. Those who did attend seemed most interested in what the town was doing to make the course "passable." For example, one person wanted to know if there would be restroom facilities. Another asked when the "swamp" on one of the holes would be fixed.

Troon: Golf needs to "get with the times" or the sport will continue to decline
DeMore introduced the idea of the need for change by discussing "The State of The Golf Industry." You can watch his remarks at left.

He repeated many of the reasons for a decline in the US in interest in golf that LOVE has previously discussed. The golf industry has not adapted to the change in the way people live today, as opposed to 15 years ago.

There is less leisure time, a greater emphasis on family time, and a reduction in the amount of money people will spend on this type of entertainment. Thus, according to DeMore, there is a need to change the Pusch View course from an executive-type course to one that is more like a fun park.

Troon plans to market "Pusch X9" throughout Arizona.

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