Proposal to Transform Pharaoh Valley Golf Course

There is a lot of buzz around a proposal that could turn the Pharaoh Valley Golf Course into a major development project, complete with upscale shops and residential living.

It was this past weekend when the developer from McKinney, Texas, presented a plan to residents who live around the golf course. As you may know, that golf course has remained unused and has become an eyesore since it closed four years ago.

Kiii News Reporter Bill Churchwell went Live with an update.

Right now, the golf course is overgrown with brush and weeks, and it's right in the backyard of nearby residents. Many people we spoke with want to see something done to change it. While some people feel the project as a great plan, other's have their concerns.

A video rendering of the project was shown to residents over the weekend during a meeting with the developer, Jeff Blackard. The plans call to revamp the 120-acre golf course by keeping nine out of the 18 holes, build a new club house, and add tennis courts. He would also create an upscale European-style village including shops and condos, which would surround a man-made lake. That part of the design would be built on 40 acres, but before moving forward, the developer would need 75-percent of residents who surround the property to approve a change to the deed restriction on that land that right now keeps it a golf course.

"He's not actually asking for the deed restriction to be lifted on the entire facility, but just the part that he is actually developing, and that keeps the deed restriction on the nine holes of the golf course," Councilwoman Colleen McIntyre said. "So just a modification on a portion of it. A lot of residents are in favor of that."

"We had three rounds of applause during this. I have never seen such a positive response like that before, so it was really exciting," said Jeanne Gardinar, president of the Neighborhood Association. "He is a man of integrity and it comes across that way, and the plan that he shows is something that is absolutely exciting. I would like to sell my house and buy one of those apartments in the village, is what he calls it."

There are, of course, some residents who are opposed to the plans. Two neighbors have concerns about the traffic the development would create off of Ennis Joslin.

Meanwhile, the Pharaoh Valley Neighborhood Association is holding a meeting Monday evening to organize a committee to research what needs to be done for the developer to move forward with his plans. If approved, it could take 10 years to compete the development. However, dredging on the lake and revamped golf course could begin as early as this summer.


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