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Harding Park Golf Course

Plans and Press



   The ordinance that established the Recreation and Park Department Golf Fund called for a six-step distribution ladder for revenues generated by that fund.  The first rung was, of course, maintenance of Harding Park golf course, the second repayment of the money borrowed from the Open Space Fund, and at the bottom of the ladder money for the area around Lake Merced.  In a letter to Gloria Bonilla, President of the Rec & Park Commission, we've requested that the annual report to the public, also required by the golf fund ordinance, reflect this six-tier assignment.  We don't expect to get any money soon (another Rec & Park pipe dream), but we'd like to keep the commitment in front of everyone.  (Political Action, 9/16/2005)

   The San Francisco Examiner has reported on other concerns regarding the Golf Fund's management.  The parks again seem to be getting the short end of the stick.  (Press, 9/21/05)

   The Harding Park golf course has now been open for three complete months.  We were provided data reporting number of rounds and revenues by user class (e.g., resident weekend), for three months since the course reopened, September through November, and for the same period before the shutdown.

Two facts are clear from this data:

1) Total use of the facility is down about 25%.  However, non-resident use is up 40%, while resident use is down 38%.
2) Use by special groups, especially seniors, is down even more.  Senior resident use is down 67% on weekdays, and a full 83% on weekends.

A copy of the use and revenue data file (Excel format) is available here.


   We have written to Sean Sweeney, Golf Course Manager for the Recreation and Park Department, asking him to work with the Lake Merced Task Force Recreation Committee to develop programs designed to bring these seniors, and other residents as well, back to Harding Park.

  This is another look at community service by the renovated Harding Park:  What does S.F. owe Harding's longtime clubs? by Brian Murphy, San Francisco Chronicle, 01/04/04

   The Harding Park golf course reopened in its restored and rejuvenated form in August 2003.  We wish the project well, as the community will benefit from its financial success.  The financing for this project stipulated that, when all other expenses have been covered, "remaining funds should be allocated to capital improvements to the park and recreation areas contiguous to Harding Park and under the Departments jurisdiction."  We've written to Michael Franks asking for quarterly updates on progress being made, and will keep you posted here.

The Recreation and Park Department's plan for Harding Park Golf Course is available here.

   In May 2002 the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed a series of actions providing for the financing of the Harding Park golf course restoration project.  For those of you who do not have time to read the small print, together these resolutions spend more than $13 million of public money designated for parks and open spaces to create a new PGA sanctioned golf course for professional golfers.  It is intended that those funds some day be restored to their original use.  However, no specific terms or timetable for repayment has been established.

You can download copies of this legislation here:

  Ordinance amending Chapter 10, Article XIII of the San Francisco Administrative Code by adding Section 10.100-256 thereto, establishing a San Francisco Recreation and Parks Golf Fund.

  Ordinance amending Article XII of the San Francisco Park Code by adding Section 12.12 thereto setting forth a fee structure for Harding Park and Fleming Golf Courses.

  Resolution authorizing the City and County of San Francisco to accept and expend State grant funds under the Per Capita Grant Program, in the amount of $8,111,000, and under the Roberti-Z'berg-Harris Urban Open Space and Recreation Program Block Grant, in the amount of $5,016,627, from the Safe Neighborhood Parks, Clean Water, Clean Air and Coastal Protection Bond Act of 2000; adopting findings pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act; and adopting findings that such action is consistent with the City's General Plan and Eight Priority Policies of City Planning Code Section 101.1.

  Resolution Approving and Authorizing a Master Tournament Agreement with PGA Tour, Inc., for the Use of Harding Park Golf Course for the PGA Tour Championship Tournament; adopting findings pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act; and adopting findings that such action is consistent with the City's General Plan and Eight Priority Policies of City Planning Code Section 101.1.

Press Coverage
   Harding officially named AMEX host, by Ron Kroichick, San Francisco Chronicle, 06/22/04

   Could Harding fixes be in danger now? by Brian Murphy, San Francisco Chronicle, 04/04/04

  Harding could host women's U.S. Open, by Brian Murphy, San Francisco Chronicle, 03/14/04

  Tours return to Harding Park gets official approval, by Brian Murphy, San Francisco Chronicle, 03/12/04

  What does S.F. owe Harding's longtime clubs? by Brian Murphy, San Francisco Chronicle, 01/04/04

  New Harding is a true gem; Layout should rank among best municipal courses in country, & Mayor Brown leads opening, by Brian Murphy, San Francisco Chronicle, 08/23/03

  Greens fees up at Harding, by Tiffany Maleshefski, San Francisco Examiner Staff Writer, July 10, 2003

  Drains rain on parade at S.F.'s Harding Park; New pipes 'backed up' during recent storm, Brian Murphy, Chronicle Staff Writer, December 8, 2002

  Dreams coming true at Harding, Brian Murphy, Chronicle Staff Writer, November 3, 2002

  Men at work -- big greens ahead; It's all dirt now, but Harding make-over is on fast track, Brian, Murphy, Chronicle Staff Writer, August 11, 2002

  Nicklaus looks past hip to hype First Tee, Brian Murphy, Chronicle Staff Writer
Sunday, August 4, 2002

  Hope is in the air as Harding Park goes on hiatus
     San Francisco Chronicle, May 26, 2002

  Overdue face-lift for golf courses; S.F. to spend $15 million to make Harding, Fleming 'world class', San Francisco Chronicle, April 9, 2002

  Harding Park bill clearing final hurdles -- maybe
     San Francisco Chronicle, April 7, 2002

  Harding garners rare bipartisan support group
     San Francisco Chronical, March 31, 2002

  S.F. panel OKs plan for Harding Park
     San Francisco Chronicle, March 28, 2002

  Tatum about to see all of his hard work for Harding pay off
     San Francisco Chronicle, March 24, 2002

  Ken Garcia reports on the development plans for Harding Park Golf Course
     San Francisco Chronicle,  Dec. 7, 2001

  Revised Harding plan is a big hit
     San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 11, 2001

  Rachel Gordon wrote a follow-on piece in her column
     San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 16, 2001

  Harding Park golf course plan approved
     Board of Supervisors will consider proposal
     San Francisco Independent, Nov. 17, 2001