NPS and NLT begin negotiations for lease of Washington DC municipals

  • Troon
    Courtesy of Troon Golf
Richard Humphreys
By Richard Humphreys

The National Park Service (NPS) and The National Links Trust (NLT) have started negotiations for the lease of three Washington DC municipal golf courses.

The NLT – a non-profit entity formed to preserve and protect publicly accessible golf – is aiming to have a lease for East Potomac Park, Langston and Rock Creek Park in place by 30 September 2020.

Tom Doak, Gil Hanse, and Beau Welling will lead renovation work on the three courses, with golf developer Mike Keiser serving as senior advisor to the NLT.

The NLT is also partnering with Troon Golf – which will manage operations of the three golf properties – to execute the lease provisions.

“These properties are more than just golf courses,” said Michael McCartin, co-founder of NLT. “They are unique cultural and recreational resources with a long and commendable record of offering affordable access to the game of golf. Our plan calls for celebrating the history of the three golf courses, particularly their role in the integration of public golf and recreational facilities in both the greater Washington DC area and the nation. We are honoured to take on the responsibility of revitalising these remarkable properties and look forward to expanding recreational opportunities for underserved communities, including seniors, veterans, individuals with disabilities and those new to golf.”

Will Smith, co-founder of NLT, added: “Our goal is not just to bring these courses back to their original prominence, but also fully restore other historically and architecturally significant elements of the properties.”

The proposed multi-year, multi-million-dollar investment will also include developing and maintaining environmentally sound open spaces and parks for the benefit of the community.

“East Potomac, Langston, and Rock Creek golf courses provide unique recreational opportunities for both area residents and visitors to our nation’s capital,” said acting NPS National Capital Area director Lisa Mendelson-Ielmini. “The National Park Service looks forward to working with National Links Trust to restore these courses, reach new golfers and continue providing affordable opportunities for all golfers.”

“Troon is proud, and honoured, to be part of The National Links Trust’s all-star team and share in their vision and commitment to bring these historic courses back to their original prominence,” said Tim Schantz, president and chief executive officer of Troon. “We look forward to being a part of delivering accessible, affordable and engaging public golf to the DC area.”

Smith said: “We are also partnering with civic, philanthropic and environmental organisations such as First Tee of Greater Washington DC, Golf. My Future. My Game, Anacostia Watershed Society and many others that share our vision and commitment to serving youth, historic user groups, and the community generally.”