Scratch Golf LLC, which owns the Bluffton, S.C., property, is planning to build a luxury RV park on one-third of the 300-acre course, along with five swimming pools, a dog park, nature trails, racquet sport courts, and more. A lawsuit filed by Scratch Golf against the county in October over zoning regulations is ongoing.
Scratch Golf LLC, the owner of the divisive Hilton Head National Golf Club in Bluffton, S.C., has released more details about its plans for a luxury RV park even as its lawsuit against Beaufort County and its zoning regulations continues, the Bluffton-based Island Packet reported.
Scratch Golf announced April 27 that it wants to use nearly a third of the roughly 300-acre course for the park which, according to spokesman Tom Gardo, is planned to include 350 parking pads for upscale vehicles, the Island Packet reported.
While the owners aren’t yet willing to disclose the facility’s projected cost and pad-rental prices, Gardo said, they will say the park could include swimming pools and pickleball courts, among other amenities. And those features, according to Gardo, will only be available to patrons who pay to stay in the park—the golf course will remain public, the Island Packet reported.
“They wanted to keep the golf course,” Gardo said, when asked about the origins of the project. He added Scratch Golf thought the park “would be amenable and a benefit to the course,” an idea that was “good for the area that people wouldn’t push back on,” the Island Packet reported.
Collins Doughtie, who has been a vocal opponent of past Scratch Golf plans, said he’s waiting for more details about the park before offering an opinion, the Island Packet reported.
“It’s a hell of a lot better than what they did originally,” Doughtie said, referring to past Scratch Golf plans that included, among other things, hundreds of apartments and single-family homes, an assisted-living facility, a performing arts center, a convention center and hundreds of thousands of square feet of retail space. Still, Doughtie raised questions about storm water runoff, the potential cost to the public and traffic concerns, the Island Packet reported.
Beaufort County Councilman Rick Caporale, who represents the district that includes Hilton Head National, said April 30 he hadn’t yet heard anything from his constituents, the Island Packet reported.
“I guess it seems a little odd after the brouhaha we had the first go around,” Caporale said. “It’s an interesting idea, it really is.”
But Caporale said he was interested to see how his colleagues on council would respond, and how the planned park might affect Scratch Golf’s current lawsuit against the county, the Island Packet reported.
That lawsuit, filed in October after Hilton Head National owners felt they weren’t given fair consideration when they proposed to rezone the property, is ongoing, according to attorney Jeff Tibbals, who represents Scratch Golf, a subsidiary of the Virginia-based firm the United Company.
The suit came four months after Beaufort County Council voted to deny a rezoning of the property, and about four years after the owners first submitted plans to the county to transform the course, the Island Packet reported.
“I think the complaint speaks for itself,” Tibbals said when asked if there was a connection between the lawsuit and the planned park. “And Scratch Golf is attempting to mitigate any adverse impacts of the re-zoning denial.”
Tibbals said his client “remains open to a negotiated resolution of its claims,” and there are “no formal settlement discussions at the present time.”
Current plans include five swimming pools, a dog park, a general-use park, nature trails and tennis and pickleball courts, Gardo said. An “amenities building” with snack and laundry facilities is also planned, the Island Packet reported.
“It’s going to be very upscale,” Gardo said. “When (Scratch Golf) were doing their studies, they found there was a shortage of luxury RV parks around the country.”
When asked if the park was a last-ditch effort to save the golf course, Gardo said: “I wouldn’t say that. The point is that, not only does it keep the golf course, but it contributes to its financial stability.”
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