Ladies golf club takes parcels off mar­ket

Threat of his­toric Thorn­hill golf course sale con­cerns res­i­dents

Thornhill Post - - News - by Jessica Wei

“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

Ratepay­ers As­so­ci­a­tion,

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

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