Council to continue discussion regarding acquisition of Casta Del Sol Golf Course for community benefit on Oct. 8
To preserve more than 100 acres of open space, the City Council is considering the acquisition of the Casta Del Sol golf course off Marguerite Parkway. On Tuesday, the City Council moved the discussion to October to allow for additional public input.
The vote comes after the Council on July 9 directed staff to evaluate the City’s interest in preserving the Casta Del Sol public golf course for public use by acquisition of the 65-acre facility. The course’s owner, American Golf Corporation (AGC), had recently put the property up for sale and accepted a $15 million offer from Irvine-based real estate firm PRES Companies. The firm then approached the City with an offer to assign rights to the purchase to the City of Mission Viejo before the AGC-PRES escrow terminated due to time limits. AGC then offered to sell the property directly to the City for $13 million.
Before considering the acquisition, City staff expended significant effort to explore the viability of the acquisition by hiring a consultant to perform a feasibility study; preparing three different financial projections; reviewing financial data and property conditions; and preparing analysis on financing options for the issuance of bonds. To fully understand the operations and financial costs, staff also visited other city-owned golf courses and researched water rights and usage at Casta Del Sol. The proposed purchase agreement includes an initial 3-year management agreement with American Golf Corporation to continue operating the Golf Course.
Because the City of Mission Viejo closed out Fiscal Year 18-19 with a $4.5 million surplus, the City can purchase the golf course with City reserves and still maintain a $21 million cash reserve balance.
Designed in 1970, the Casta Del Sol course has long been a significant community-oriented property with an emphasis on benefiting the residents and guests of the Casta Del Sol development as well as the entire Mission Viejo community.
Please purchase and keep this property as a Golf Course. We have plenty of parks, etc. for families. The Golf Course is the primary recreation facility for the many Seniors and Veterans in our community and one of the few courses they can afford to use. This is something that originally attracted people to purchase at Casta de Sol and the other condos and home near the course. This is a good investment for the City going forward.
Surplus funds should first go to upgrading existing facilities. As part of the City's Capital Improvement Program, the Community Services Commission has prioritized a list of recommended projects that need funding. See Item #10 from Council mtg on 4/9/2019: https://dms.cityofmissionviejo.org/OnBaseAgendaOnline/Documents/ViewDoc…
I would hope the City would prioritize these already recommended and needed projects to utilize Fiscal Year 18-19 surplus of $4.5 million surplus. Dropping the reserve balance down to $21 million would likely push those projects out for the unforeseeable future.
While I am in favor of the City taking over the golf course, can the City really afford it and at what impact to other City projects?
If fiscally possible I would definitely want to see the city purchase the golf course. I feel is the only way to guarantee the preservation of its use as a viable form of recreation for the community. If placed in the hands of outside interests, there is no telling what may happen, which is especially concerning for those who live on the course.
I'm certainly no expert on such things, but I do know this: new housing on the Casta del Sol site will create even more vehicle traffic. Something we should avoid at all costs. If Irvine Co wants to build more housing, let them build it in IRVINE! Seems like best approach is to have MV buy the Casta del Sol course & continue to have American Golf operate it. I think the open space the course provides is priceless.
I am a resident of Rancho Santa Margarita and I regularly play golf at Casta del Sol GC. I also have many friends who live in Orange County who make the drive to play at this course. The course is an asset to Mission Viejo for many reasons which include it’s natural beauty and open space, and to visit local businesses for dining and shopping after golf.
The course has the potential to generate good income for the city. I would like to see better groundskeeping and renovations in the patio area for outside events. I would be willing to pay a bit more for golf if theses improvements were implemented, keep the course as is please,
Please buy the course. Great recreation for oldies like me and my husband. We can ride in a cart and not pay budget-breaking fees. Young people and beginners can play too.
We have provided lots of park space and pools for recreation for those young enough and strong enough to participate. Please add this public course to our wonderful city.
Please keep it as a golf course. We don’t need more housing and traffic, or special park spaces. The space would provide locals with golf play, training, enjoyment for all ages and could be an additional revenue source for the city.
Thank you for asking.