Ladies golf club takes parcels off market
Threat of historic Thornhill golf course sale concerns residents
“It’s a Don River tributary. We’ve had serious flooding here in the past.”
The historic Thornhill Ladies Golf Club is no longer taking offers for the two parcels of land it had put on the market through Colliers International. The golf club, with help from Colliers, had accepted offers for six weeks on one 2.5-acre parcel of land along Bayview Avenue and one eight-acre property on the northeast corner of the course along Royal Orchard Boulevard. The members will reconvene in October to vote on whether to or not to sell and which offer to accept if the decision is to sell. In order for any sale to be made, the vote has to reach a two-thirds majority.
“All we’re doing is going through the process of discovery to find out what the offers are.,” said Paul Lussier, general manager of the Thornhill Ladies Golf Club, confirming they have received offers on both parcels. “Then we can look at the offers, make a recommendation to the members on whether we think they’re good enough to sell or not.” However, the impending risk of future development along Royal Orchard Boulevard has raised tensions among residents who formed a residents’ group last September.
According to Peter Rawson, president of the Royal Orchard
approximately 250 to 300 people showed up to the first meeting. “There was a big response to it.”
Rawson’s house backs onto the golf course. He and his neighbours enjoy the sweeping view of the golf course’s 125 landscaped acres. However, their concerns exceed the threat of a spoiled view.
“There’s a lot of water back there,” said Rawson. “It’s a Don River tributary. We’ve had serious flooding here in the past. ”
Markham Ward 1 councillor Valerie Burke is also concerned with a loss of green space in the area. Directly north of the golf club are two major areas identified for major intensification in the town’s official plan: the 16th Avenue Key Development Area and the Langstaff Gateway. East of the Thornhill Ladies Golf Club, residents are pitted against developers over a proposed development on the 417-acre York Down Golf Club.
“[Golf courses provide] cooling and cleaning of our air and storm water mitigation and wildlife habitat,” said Burke. “We need our green space. I find it devastating that it’s always under attack.”
“Whether anything gets sold or not, it has to make sense for the club going forward,” said Lussier. “Otherwise, the club will just continue on as is and we won’t touch it.”
The landscaped grounds of the historic Thornhill Ladies Golf Club