Developers usually seek to maximize their land’s value. Amenities are often used to accomplish this purpose. One of the most popular amenities of the past half century has been the golf course and the integrated golf course development. Today, however, U.S. golf course developments are overbuilt and represent, to some, a tired model for development-supported amenities. Furthermore, trends in sustainability have led to the creation of denser and less impactful developments, in contrast to the typical sprawling and ecologically impactful golf developments. These trends have forced developers to consider alternative amenities for driving land values and sales pace. Amenities, such as open space preserves, organic farms, urban parks and community centers, create unique centerpieces for new developments and in many cases represent a better value proposal than traditional golf developments. However, in markets where golf courses are not overbuilt and strong demand exists, unique implementations can both satiate golf demand and provide an environmentally functional purpose for the development to placate shareholders and stakeholders alike.
Grooms, T. (2010). Alternatives to golf course developments in an environmentally sensitive market. Cornell Real Estate Review, 8,88-99.