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Murray Journal

Golf Course Prices to Increase

Apr 07, 2016 03:00PM ● By Natalie Mollinet

By Natalie Mollinet | [email protected]

Murray - In March, the Murray City Council heard from Doug Hill, the Public Services director, about changing the pricing at the Murray Parkway golf course. The prices at the golf course are set to go up by only a dollar per nine holes for the regular rate and 50 cents for the senior rate. Another change would be the increase in a 10-round punch card by $10, increasing it from $120 to $130. 

The price increases are set to help get a new irrigation system in the golf course that is sorely needed. 

“We’ve been saving money for many years,” Hill said. “We have saved about $750,000, but at this rate the irrigation system is going to break down.” 

The price increases are expected to generate $50,000 in new revenue to help make up the bond payment over the next 15 years. Currently about $35,000 or more per year is spent on just replacing parts that are wearing out. The irrigation system is outdated and isn’t efficient, so the need for a new one is important. 

Recently, golf courses have been struggling to generate revenue, not only here in Murray but across the country. Murray Parkway Golf Course is one of the few golf courses that have made a profit, but the course won’t have enough money to put in a new irrigation system with how slowly the course is generating money for the irrigation. The cost of the irrigation system is estimated at $2 million. 

The course was built in 1986, and was the first effort the city undertook along the Jordan River. The course was a major success and began making a profit quickly. The money that went into the golf course went into helping developing much of the trail along the Jordan River Parkway as is evident with the playground and the path. But by the early 2000s, the number of golfers had decreased along the Salt Lake Valley and through the country. 

“We decided to borrow the money so we can get it going,” Hill said concerning the building of a new irrigation system. “Then we can pay it back with revenue from the course. That’s primarily why there’s a fee increase.” 

The golf course has helped develop not only the Jordan River Parkway, but has helped develop the west side of Murray City. 

“When the golf course was announced, that spread a lot of economic development in the city,” Hill said. “And that has benefited the city and the school district, and it has brought in more tax revenue.”

Another little-known fact about the golf course is that he is very green, meaning it is environmentally friendly. The golf course doesn’t use culinary water to water the golf course. Plus, the course takes the storm drain water that’s under I-215, and that water goes into some of the ponds on the golf course. That water is used to water the golf course. 

“It’s cleaning the water before it goes into the Jordan River,” Hill said. “It sifts out all the salts, and because of that it was given an award by the Environmental Protocol Agency.” 

The new prices in the course are very minimal, and officials don’t think that this will deter people from using the golf course. 

“The price increase should be no big deal for our customers,” John Pearson, head golf professional at Murray Parkway, said. “It has been several years since we increased the fees. With the increase we are still in line with the pricing of competing courses in the Salt Lake Valley. We anticipate no drop in play due to the increase.” 

“Most people will see that we’re putting the money to go back into the course,” Hill said.