The development team behind the proposed Arm End golf course and multi-use public recreational facility in Hobart, Tasmania, is celebrating as the project has moved a big step closer to fruition.
Tasmanian authorities have granted the team a lease on the land, which is located across the estuart of the River Derwent from Hobart city.
Project manager Craig Ferguson said work will now begin to finalise the extensive walking, cycling, golfing, bird watching, fishing, nature and heritage interpretation location. “We believe Arm End will become one of Tasmania’s most widely used and enjoyed areas of public land. The site is absolutely spectacular – the perfect location for Tasmanian families and their children.”
Ferguson said the first major task will be to start the environmental rehabilitation programme for the 121-hectare site, including management of introduced weeds, erosion control and native plant revegetation.
“The world class, public golf course, planned to open in 2016, will fund ongoing rehabilitation and preservation programmes for generations to come. We want to assure the community that the site will remain open for free and unrestricted access for the whole community into the future. For more than 100 years, this land was farmed extensively; for almost 20 years it has largely fallen into disrepair despite the best efforts of the local community. We will restore the land to its former native coastal glory.”
The course is being designed by Australian golf architects Neil Crafter and Paul Mogford. Crafter told GCA: “To have achieved the formal lease signing stage with the Tasmanian government is the culmination of a good deal of hard work and community consultation by the proponents, headed by Greg Ramsay, as well as the project planners. Our role in integrating the golf course with these other recreational uses has been challenging, but rewarding.”
“The site is a spectacular one, unlike any other to our knowledge in Australia, with water views from every hole around a dynamic coastline of dunes, cliffs, beaches and promontories – all of which have been incorporated into the masterplan for both golfers and non-golfers. The site is certainly Top 10 calibre in Australia and our task is to design and build a course that is worthy of the site. It can be quite windy at times at Arm End and the course will play very differently with different winds – the course we have routed will come in at around 6,000 metres from the rear tees, and will play at around 5,500 metres for typical public play. The fairways will be wide from both a strategic and ease of play perspective and shaping will be minimal, our intention is to only shape tees, greens and bunkers and use the natural lay of the land for fairways. The project will protect both Aboriginal and colonial heritage and there will be extensive revegetation with indigenous plants of what is now weed-infested and degraded former farmland.”
Crafter said he expected construction to begin in 2015, and hoped that golfers might be able to experience the course by late 2016.