Rotary Club Receives $2.7M To Finish Links Golf Course

The Rotary Club of Fort McMurray is receiving $2.7 million to complete their Links golf course.

Wood Buffalo council approved the funding request on Tuesday after previously rejecting a $3.5 million ask back in January.

Mayor Don Scott tells Mix News this time Rotary included a plan to provide funding back to the community which he believes played a big part.

The Rotary Club suggests they will donate over $5 million over the first ten years the 18-hole course is up and running.

“So, $5 million back into the community but a $2.7 million investment upfront – that’s a pretty good payback for this region,” added Scott.

The Links golf course has been up and running over the past couple of seasons. Back in 2015, they received around $6 million from the RMWB for the project.

The course currently only has nine holes operational with the new funds being used to finish construction.

According to Paul Spring, Incoming Rotary President, they project a 40 per cent utilization rate when all 18 holes are operational. To breakeven, the course would need to see around 25 per cent utilization.

The only member of council to vote against the request was Councillor Verna Murphy. Councillor Jeff Peddle wasn’t in attendance.

She claimed it was a tough decision, but believed it wasn’t the right time to invest in a golf course as the region faces an economic downturn.

However, Scott says this may just be the best time.

“This is the right time to do these things because we’re constructing at a time when costs are at a rate that organizations like Rotary can afford it.”

If a decision was delayed, the Rotary Club risked losing their contractor and having to find another, potentially at an increased cost.

They are hoping to start construction immediately with hopes of having it fully operational sometime during the next season or 2022 season.

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