As part of the Rexford, N.Y. club’s new redevelopment proposal, golf would be reduced from 27 to 18 holes, a new clubhouse would be built and the existing clubhouse would be converted into the senior-care facility. Additonal residential units are in the plans, as well as new recreational offerings, such as pickleball.
A revised design to transform the Edison Club in Rexford, N.Y., will reduce the number of golf-course holes from an earlier proposal, increase the number of residential units, build a new clubhouse and convert the present one into a senior-care facility, the Oneida Daily Dispatch reported.
The plans for the 287-acre club were submitted to the town’s Planning Department last month, The Dispatch reported. The new proposal follows one submitted to the town in the fall of 2017.
At a presentation for the original plan as to why the historic private club was seeking to change its long-familiar operation, General Manager Craig McLean said the Edison Club is in the same situation as many other local and national private golf clubs, in that it no longer has enough members to support its ongoing costs, The Dispatch reported.
Documents submitted at the time noted lifestyle changes, tax-code changes, a decline in private golf demand and an overbuilt inventory of local golf courses as factors in the club’s decision to pursue the new plan, The Dispatch reported. The club was established in 1926, originally by employees of General Electric, and traces its origins to 1904. It offers members and their guests swimming, tennis and banquet facilities, in addition to golf on a course originally designed by Devereux Emmet.
The earlier design submitted by the Edison Club sought to reduce the number of holes for golfers from 27 to 20, but the new plans reduce that to 18 holes in play and two for practice, The Dispatch reported. New fairways would be constructed for Nos. 1, 8, 9, 10, 17 and 18. An existing driving range would be kept.
The initial plans called for a total of 206 residential units, including 60 single-family homes, 30 twin homes, 44 “living” units in 11 residential buildings and 72 condominiums, The Dispatch reported. The new design has a total of 215 living units, including 45 single-family homes, 17 duplex buildings, and 136 condos in eight-unit and four-unit buildings.
The single-family homes are to be built on small lots averaging 10,000 sq. ft. or large lots averaging 15,000 sq. ft., The Dispatch reported. Duplexes would be built on 15,000-sq. ft. lots.
The present clubhouse is to remain on site and would be converted to a 60-bed enhanced senior-care facility, The Dispatch reported. A new clubhouse would then be built with “recreational amenities.”
A practice green, practice tee and short-game practice area are also part of the plan, The Dispatch reported. The project includes modifying the existing swimming-pool area, constructing two tennis courts and two pickleball courts, as well as building a new parking area.
The recreational area in the new plan is 203 acres, The Dispatch reported. Residential living would take up 80 acres, the senior-care facility would occupy three acres, and the club has agreed to convey one acre to the adjacent Stewart’s Shop.
According to the latest narrative, approximately 70 percent of the site’s acreage is to remain for golf, The Dispatch reported. A vegetative buffer would be preserved for those areas fronting two existing busy roads along the eastern and southern boundaries as visual screening, and the existing parking area would be converted to green space.
“The existing use of the site as a golf course provides an open-space character of the land when viewed from adjoining roadways and properties,” the narrative states. “The project will not substantially alter this condition.”
At the presentation in 2017, McLean told the town board that changing demographics and approaches to leisure have impacted golf courses across the country and the Edison Club is no different, The Dispatch reported. Golfers no longer have the time to spend a full day at the club as in years past, he said at the earlier presentation. There are many demands on their time.
“We need more revenue streams,” McLean said at the 2017 meeting. “We need to diversify. It’s not like the Edison Club will go out of business if we can’t do this. We just won’t be as vibrant. We will struggle.”
The club is seeking to get approval from the Town Board to allow the desired changes as amendments to its original Planned Unit Development legislation, The Dispatch reported.