The private, 18-hole Newark, Del., club has agreed to sell half of its 145 acres to a commercial developer, and is in discussions with the state about building a connecting road through the middle of the property. Though details of the contract have not been released, the club will continue to offer all 18 holes of golf for its 300 members for at least the next three years.
Cavaliers Country Club in Newark, Del., has agreed to sell half of its land to a commercial developer and is in discussions with the state about building a connecting road through the middle of its property, the Wilmington (Del.) News Journal reported.
The private 18-hole golf course and country club agreed to the sale amid financial difficulties brought on by declining membership in recent years, said Robert Carucci, managing partner of Cavaliers Realty LLC, which owns the club.
“The entire environment of the country club industry has been going downhill for years,” Carucci said. “We have a valuable property, and our membership has been declining. We got a generous offer, we considered it, and we decided to take it. At some point, you have to start taking a look at what’s best for your stockholders.”
The club has about 300 members and was founded in 1959, the News Journal reported.
About half of the club’s 145 acres are under contract, Carucci said. The buyer of the properties is Wyomissing, Pa.-based Carlino Development Group. The firm is considering plans to develop the site as a mix of residential and retail properties, said Chuck White, the broker-owner of White Realty Associates, which represented Carlino in the transaction.
White would not comment on the price of the property or other details of the contract, and he would not disclose whether Carlino had any specific stores in mind for tenants on the site. Carlino was attracted to the site’s proximity to the mall and major highways, the News Journal reported.
“They are at the beginning of their land planning stages,” White said. “It’s a big parcel, so there are a lot of different ways you could develop it.”
The parcel—which is the course’s western section and back nine holes—will require a variety of approvals from New Castle County and might need to be rezoned before any development takes place, Carucci said, a process that could take three to five years, the News Journal reported.
In the meantime, for at least the next three years and potentially longer, the club will continue to offer 18-hole golf. Carucci would not disclose the name of the buyer or sale price, the News Journal reported.
Cavaliers could continue in the future as a nine-hole course, Carucci said, but the club has had discussions with the Delaware Department of Transportation about building a road through the middle of the property connecting Churchmans Road to the busy Delaware 1. If that were to happen, the club would strongly consider finding a buyer for the rest of its land, the News Journal reported.
“If we have a contract on the easterly side with a decent offer, we’ll have to take a close look at it,” Carucci said.