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No decision further delays public golf course

Don’t look for construction equipment on the new public golf course in Boca Teeca anytime soon.

A long-awaited joint meeting Tuesday night between the buyer and city council didn’t produce a design approval.

Council backed off sanctioning Price Fazio’s design for 18 holes, a short course and putting greens on the former Ocean Breeze. But they also didn’t take over the project to construct Boca National Golf Club at 5800 NW Second Ave., even though the subject was floated.

Instead they asked the Greater Boca Raton Beach & Park District to come up with firmer figures to build the entire course.

“Once you do that and make the ask, we’ll be in a better position,” Mayor Scott Singer said.

The district agreed to figure out the finances at their next meeting June 3, then report back to council at the June 10 workshop. The next time council can vote is their regular meeting June 11. Their next regular meeting is July 23.

So, the move further delays putting construction out to bid and starting the build in September. In that case the course could have opened by September 2020, said project manager Art Koski, former district interim director.

The district also agreed to come up with options on how they could work with the city. They own the east side of the course outright. The 18 holes west side was paid for with a city loan. “We supported $19 million, so we are partners in this,” Councilwoman Andrea O’Rourke said. “But we don’t want any surprises.”

In fact, the meeting had its share of surprises. Council expected the district to ask for some or all of $26 million to $28 million for the entire build.

But Bob Rollins, speaking for the district, said they could finance the first phase, just the 18-hole course for $10 million. The district said it could build the rest in phases, although it didn’t really want to do that.

The money going forward was the real sticking point for council. “I would never build a house without knowing what it cost,” said Councilwoman Monica Mayotte.

By Marci Shatzman

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