Subject to approval from the Hawaii capital’s City Council as well the state’s Board of Land and Natural Resources, the deal would upgrade the traditional driving range at the Ala Wai Golf Course with a high-tech facility that would offer a variety of golf-related activities. A city official estimates the update would quadruple the range’s existing annual revenues, to $2 million.
The city of Honolulu, Hawaii is looking to partner with Topgolf Hawaii to replace the driving range at one of its municipal golf courses with a high-tech version and other golf-related activities, the Honululu Star-Advertiser reported.
The city offered Topgolf Hawaii a 20-year lease deal with options to extend up to 40 years to upgrade Ala Wai Golf Course’s traditional driving range, the Star-Advertiser reported. Topgolf was offered a conditional award following a competitive request-for-proposals process that began in December.
Topgolf plans to invest $50 million on the project, the Star-Advertiser reported. The company is expected to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the Ala Wai Golf Course driving range and other golf-related activities.
The partnership will pay the city a minimum annual lease rent of $1.02 million and 1 percent of its gross revenue on sales, the Star-Advertiser reported, to conduct business at the prime Ala Wai location, which offers views of Hawaii’s iconic Diamond Head volcanic cone. The base rent is set to increase as the contract progresses.
The lease will require approval from the Honolulu City Council and the state Board of Land and Natural Resources, because the golf course sits on state land, the Star-Advertiser reported
The deal would boost declining revenue at the city’s six courses, where expenses exceed revenue by several million dollars annually, Guy Kaulukukui, Director of the city’s Department of Enterprise Services, told the Star-Advertiser.
The Ala Wai course’s driving range earns between $500,000 and $600,000 in annual gross revenue, Kaulukukui said, but he expects that figure to quadruple to about $2 million annually under Topgolf Hawaii.
The company also plans to add up to 450 jobs offering full-time, part-time and seasonal work at the facility, the Star-Advertiser reported.
The upgraded facility should be open to the public in a few years if everything works out, it was reported.
Still, some community members like Michelle Matson have criticized the project, the Star-Advertiser reported, fearing Topgolf’s large venue will be out of place in Hawaii, especially so close to Diamond Head.
“The city seems to be running amok with overdevelopment proposals for our open green space,” Matson said.