Ben Crenshaw, who grew up in Austin, Texas and “incidentally” made his first hole-in-one at the municipal facility, said he wants to see the greens rebuilt, with more bunkers and trees added to the layout. The cost of restoring the course is estimated to be $10-12 million, and Crenshaw said he is convinced the funds could be raised privately.
The Lions Municipal Golf Course (MUNY) in Austin, Texas could possibly be going through a restoration in the next few years, supported by Ben Crenshaw, the Austin-based KVUE-TV reported.
Crenshaw grew up in Austin and learned the game of golf at the MUNY. “It’s where I incidentally made my first hole-in-one,” Crenshaw said. “I think I used my mother’s Patty Bird 5-iron.”
The personality of the golf course he knew back then is gone today, Crenshaw said. “I tried not to be so vocal about this, but I do care about it very much,” Crenshaw said.
Many in Austin care, as the course was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in large part due to it being the first racially-integrated public golf course in the country. Today, Crenshaw wants to see the greens rebuilt, the insertion of more bunkers and more trees included in the layout, KVUE-TV reported.
“Part of the beauty of this golf course are the trees, but they need diagnostic help,” Crenshaw said. “It was a better test of golf back then.”
While Crenshaw said nothing needs to be changed to the fairways, he also brought up the fact that in the 1970s, a decision was made to reverse some of the holes, which Crenshaw said messes with the routing of the course, KVUE-TV reported.
“I’ve been puzzled by that ever since,” Crenshaw said. “I want to elicit all the help I can from you guys that I grew up with. We’re going to get this right. This is a part of us, and it’s a part of us all to protect what we have in this town.”
The cost of restoring this course is estimated to be $10-12 million, and Crenshaw said he and others involved are convinced the funds could be raised privately, KVUE-TV reported.
The MUNY is facing some challenges to remain the historic treasure it is today. The course is city operated on land Austin leases from the University of Texas (UT). The current lease is up in 2019—and UT wants to develop the land, KVUE-TV reported.
However, UT has also offered to re-lease it to the city but at a higher cost. There is also a proposed bill in the legislature that would transfer ownership from UT to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, KVUE-TV reported.
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