Grab your golf clubs and head northward because Donald Trump’s brand new luxury golf course is open for business. After decades of delays and cost overruns, The Donald has finally made the city’s dream of a public golf course in the Bronx a reality. Called the Trump Gold Links at Ferry Point, the 7,400-yard course has been constructed atop a one-time landfill. And though its former use is anything but five-star, you wouldn’t guess it by the admission price—Trump is charging nearly three times as much to use his greens as other city courses.
The site of the 18-hole course has been a point of stress and struggle for the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation since its last days as a landfill in 1963. The city first partnered with Ferry Point Partners to transform the site, but when it came time to build, its former use unearthed numerous issues during construction, including the toxic substances found in the soil (even today, vents placed across the links provide a point of exit for methane sitting below ground). Ferry Point Partners eventually exited in 2006 unwilling to pour any more money into the project, and the city then attempted to build the course itself using city contractors. Costs ballooned even further, but this time at the expense of taxpayers. In the face of local criticism, they were forced to find another developer to fill the financing gap. The Trump Organization was chosen in 2010 and the plan moved forward once again.
With Trump at the helm, the project took on a new and much more luxurious turn. The Donald, well-versed in developing golf courses, enlisted the help of golf course designers Jack Nicklaus and John Sanford who developed the green in the Scottish style without trees—though this was in a large part dictated by the site’s past use as a landfill.
The foothill-like topography juxtaposes nicely with the Manhattan skyline and East River, both of which wrap the course to provide spectacular vistas—a key draw for golfers who have been swiftly scooping up spots on the course’s reservation list even with its lofty fees ($169 for city residents and $215 for nonresidents on weekends). Guests also enjoy electric golf carts outfitted with GPS and food delivery while on the green, and Trump has plans to construct a $10 million clubhouse and a state-of-the-art driving range and practice facility. The ultimate goal is to host a major tournament like the P.G.A. championships or Ryder Cups on-site.
[ViaNew York Times]
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