High housing demand in some regional markets is causing a flurry of new development on struggling golf courses, where builders say the opportunities for residential construction are endless. Like many expansive golf courses across the U.S., the Links at Queen Creek course in San Tan Valley, Arizona struggled to maintain its 106 acres amid soaring prices for upkeep paired with declining interest from local golfers.
After 26 years of operation, Queen Creek closed its doors and its fairways two years ago, but developers quickly swooped in to revitalize the property by turning it into a new residential community. According to The New York Times, the Links at Queen Creek is one of many abandoned courses across the country being transformed into housing developments.
For residential developers, the opportunities are numerous: From 1986 to 2006, 4,400 new courses were built around the country, according to the National Golf Foundation, an industry research group. But since then, more than 1,000 have closed. Many others have gone on the market as revenues decline and operational expenses climb, including the high cost of water for irrigation.