Row brewing over Chamberlain Park course designs
Golfers are teed off with new Chamberlain Park golf course design options, claiming they are unsafe and don’t offer golfers a fair test of their skills.
The Albert-Eden Local Board decided at an extraordinary meeting on April 22 to progress with four master plan options for the redevelopment of the 32.3 hectare park next to the northwestern motorway.
A controversial difference in the four options is the reconfiguration of the park’s existing 18-hole course.
Three of the options offer a restructured 18-hole course and the other a nine hole course. Two of the options include a driving range and practise area.
All the designs meet the handicap rating requirement, which means the course must be nine holes or above with at least two holes more than 229m.
Chamberlain Park Golf Club committee member Richard Quince says golfers are being misled into believing the course will be similar to its original design.
‘‘The majority supported an 18-hole golf course for Chamberlain Park clearly, because we had a signature petition which out-voted everybody else,’’ he says.
‘‘The trouble is the board can play semantics here and say: ‘Look we’ve given you an 18-hole golf course,’ when really it’s six par 3s and 12 par 4s. That, in my opinion, is not a test of golf.’’
Local board member Graeme Easte says users of the course need to know how the reconfiguration will affect them.
‘‘It is nothing like the existing 18-hole golf course and it could potentially be quite tight, potentially less safe,’’ he says.
‘‘You might get a nice, challenging golf course with only nine holes, but good holes, or a whole mess of short holes. You’ll still have 18, but some of them won’t be quite satisfactory.’’
The shorter golf course also creates a safety risk, Easte says.
‘‘We need to have a reasonably generous safety zone between buffers and golfers,’’ he says.
Quince says unless walkways and cycleways through the course are totally enclosed, ‘‘there is a real health and safety issue’’.