• Advertisement

  • MNP Economic Assessment Report indicates Lakeside Golf Club cannot continue to operate

    Members of the public are encouraged to attend an online information session on the future of the Lakeside Golf Club

    Slokker Homes is inviting Chestermere residents to an online information session regarding the future of the Lakeside Golf Club, and the results of the MNP Economic Assessment Report.

    With the collaboration of Slokker Homes and the current administration of the Lakeside Golf Club, information of the last five financial years was collected and submitted to MNP.

    “MNP has done other feasibility studies for golf courses, and that is why they were the most qualified to provide this report in the Calgary area,” said the President and CEO of Slokker Homes, Peter Paauw.

    To complete the Economic Assessment Report of the Lakeside Golf Club, MNP reviewed the golf industry overall, the golf industry in the Calgary metropolitan area, the Lakeside Golf Club operational numbers, and the golf course itself.

    “On that benchmark alone, the golf course is operating very poorly. The study identified an annual revenue shortfall of about 32 per cent on an annual basis, which roughly equates to $800,000 per year. On top of that, the golf course is behind on critical maintenance of almost 3 million,” Paauw said.

    “The hole is too big, 32 per cent revenue in order to break even is just too big of a hole, especially considering there are 52 other golf courses in the close-by area. There is no room to increase the annual membership, to increase the green fees, or to increase the food and beverage with that revenue number,” he said.

    For Slokker Homes, it was important to complete the Economic Assessment Report of the Lakeside Golf Club, as they want to be transparent.

    “The obvious questions will be, why is the golf course not being sold, why doesn’t it continue as an operating golf course, a study like this makes the financial feasibility question crystal clear,” Paauw said.

    Adding, “For Chestermere at large, it is very clear that the golf course is operating at an unsustainable financial loss on an annual basis. In the long-term, it will for sure have to close down.”

    Although Slokker Homes has not yet submitted an official development proposal to Chestermere City Council, Paauw and the Slokker Homes team are working on showing the vision of the development.

    “As a development proposal we think we have a very compelling vision that we will want to work in further cooperation with the citizens of Chestermere,” Paauw said.

    The development proposal will feature low-density housing, a buffer between the new development and existing homes, and green space.  

    “We think Chestermere can become a leader in the sense of bike-orientated development, and the golf course can connect the pathways. It’s a compelling economic alternative, it will make Chestermere more diverse and economically help out,” Paauw said.

    Adding, “We understand some people will be highly disappointed, and there are a few avid golfers that will be highly upset, but we will offer a very compelling and attractive offer that will make Chestermere a better city.”

    For more information, or to register for the Slokker Homes information sessions on March 9, and March 11 visit, https://www.lakesidefuture.com/lakeside-future/info-session.

    6 Comments

    1. Greg Fulmes

      March 2, 2021 at 9:03 am

      Perhaps some balanced reporting would be better than re-writing a press release from Slokker.
      Including some content from the current development on the west side, questioning the CEO on over development in an already depressed market, etc.
      You are our community newspaper not a PR piece for developers.
      Do better. Our community needs you to.

    2. Brent Ladds

      March 2, 2021 at 10:11 am

      If it was such a bad business to invest in, why did Slokker choose to do so? Slokker has had one objective in mind, since investing in the golf club.

      With respect to the MNP report, it should be shared, to provide others an opportunity to evaluate their findings, if that is in fact what Slokker, is relying upon.

      If the present ownership group no longer finds it financially feasible to operate the golf course, it should be offered for sale at fair value, to give a more committed group an opportunity to maintain it.

      Slokker was never in the golf business, they are a developer, and in my opinion,never have had any desire to run a golf course, since the time they invested.

      This has been the plan , all along !

      The ill conceived survey, the financial reports, are all part of Slokker’s general strategy of hoping the locals will tire of the battle and slowly fade away into the sunset, while big business, continues to profit without regard for the collateral damage that they cause while filling their pockets.

      I don’t recall seeing any request going to Slokker by the Chestermere community asking you to make “Chestermere a better city”

      We think we have a great city now, and the ‘farmer’s field’ that we play golf on, is just fine with us .

      Stay strong Chestermere ! !

    3. Rose Samulenok

      March 2, 2021 at 12:54 pm

      It is hard to know where to start to comment on this misleading article. 1- If there are 52 golf courses surrounding the Chestermere area how can 51 operate successfully and this one can’t?
      2- MNP has no experience in operating a golf course so they are reliant on numbers given to them by current owners who have ulterior motives.
      3- Chestermere has plently of bikepath access,adding more would not particularly benefit our community.
      4- Low density housing does not mean single family homes, so for those who believe Slokker is proposing to create an exculsive community, don’t be fooled. Investigate Slokker’s history of multi-family dwellings.
      5- Peter Paauw insulted our community in a recent CBC news artice by calling our golf course a farmers field and not a nice place to live alongside. ULTERIOR MOTIVE OR NOT, THAT COMMENT IS HURTFUL AND UNNESSARY.

    4. Troy Prusky

      March 3, 2021 at 9:01 am

      The article is unfortunately one sided and misleading. The fact that the ownership group hasn’t reinvested in their asset and mismanaged the business should be the focal point to the claim of not being economically viable. Ownership needs to become more supportable. Since they have found themselves in an unsupportable situation, they wish to hit the home run with building town homes to cash out.
      I hope that the City sees that they have plenty of vacant developments around town and decline this application (when presented) to avoid another undeveloped development in the middle of the City.
      A New Ownership Group is needed, one that is dedicated to managing a golf course year round. Its really that simple.

    5. Darby King-Maillot

      March 4, 2021 at 7:15 am

      The golf course has not maximized their business by keeping the restaurant open in the winter or by having a junior program. Junior members grow up and turn into adults who buy memberships. The junior members of 15 years ago would be buying memberships today. In the last two years a junior program has been started and had 200 kids last summer. Current ownership’s failure to run a successful business should not compel City Council to rezone. Lakeside Greens Golf Course Preservation Society has been set up to protect the golf course from rezoning and development. See our website https://lakesidepreservation.com

    6. Ken Prusky

      March 7, 2021 at 7:12 pm

      No Need to hire a high price consultant to review those annual profit and loss statements over the last 5 years. Anyone would come to the same conclusion, it reflects the intention of the owners to redirect the funds to themselves or another entity.

      Question to ask maybe “How did Lakeside fall into the current dyer position it currently in?” or maybe the phrase “Follow the money” or Pay yourself first”
      Current ownership has intentionally avoided providing proper funding or direction into improving maintenance or upgrading of Lakeside. The slow deterioration of Lakeside started when the owners invested south of the border in another run down golf course.
      Lakeside is currently operating under an inadequate management group who’s focus is not on Lakeside. Continually in conflict with City council gives some idea where their mindset is.
      The unwillingness to sell Lakeside pairs with the owners unrealistic real estate value along with numerous conditions no new owner would ever agree to. If they have no interest in promoting, maintaining or upgrading Lakeside why will they not sell the golf course to new owners with new ideas, new energy and the willingness to promote Lakeside and build a new relationship with City council.
      Slokker Homes has no interest in maintaining or operating Lakeside.
      The key message and greatest benefits of a community golf course are the Social, Health and Environmental Impact on the community.
      The golf community is well positioned to contribute more, for the welfare of the communities, environment and success of local businesses.