Las Vegas National Golf Course Owners To File HOUSING DEVELOPEMENT Plans With Clark County

A plan to re-develop the Las Vegas National Golf Course has been discussed before at VeryVintageVegas. Once again, this plan has raised it’s ugly head. This time, the announcement is made in an email to the neighborhood of Paradise Palms. Of course it’s buried at the bottom after a litinay of how they’ve worked so hard to keep the Las Vegas National Golf Course as it always has been.

Commercial encroachment into our vintage neighborhoods is bad enough, but the conversion of the golf course, which is a vital part of the Mid Century Modern neighborhood of Paradise Palms would be disastrous in so many ways. The email explains the issues, has links, and an official response from Tic Segerbloom, The assemblyman from district 9. The original email from the owners of the golf course is at the bottom. 

A MAJOR TURNOUT OF CONCERNED CITIZENS IS VITAL TO STOPPING THIS. There will be a meeting, as noted below on TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 9th 6:30pm at the Cambridge Recreation Center. (3930 Cambridge Street)


 
Dear Neighbors,
 
Mr. Knott has issued a statement regarding the Las Vegas National Golf Course, and his intention to file plans of the housing development (what is called a “tentative map”) with the Clark County Planning Commission, and subsequently the County Commissioners.  Mr. Knott’s statement is available for viewing at www.savethecourse.com, or at the bottom of this e-mail.
 
While we all appreciate everything that Mr. Knott and his partners are doing to improve the course and their business interest, a tentative map is an extremely serious step in the development of the course and we must use many avenues to object and challenge it during the approval process.
 
The term “tentative” is misleading, because if this map is approved without our strong objection, then we will have virtually no recourse in the future.
 
This may be the most important time to bring the community together, so there will be a COMMUNITY MEETING on TUESDAY, SEPT. 9th, 6:30 pm at the Cambridge Recreation Center (near Katie Ave).
 
To help you understand the situation better, we have posted an on-line video of questions and answers from our Nevada Legislature Assemblyman TICK SEGERBLOM, who has stepped forward with information and a willingness to lead us in this important challenge.
 
The video is in two (2) short parts and may be viewed at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7m6S863Amj0
 
[if you have any trouble with this link, simply go to www.YouTube.com, and search under lvgolfcourse]
 
In the two-part video, Tick will answer the following questions:
• What is a tentative Map?
• How do we fight a tentative map?
• Do we need legal representation?
• If we raise money, who will be the custodian?
• What is our legal right to challenge this development?
• Who will lead the challenge?
• Do we need to attend Commission meetings when asked?
Please join us for this important meeting. As a community, we can stop this unnecessary development and preserve one of the few historic open green spaces that Las Vegas has left.
Thank you,
Cab, Kate, Skip, Susan, Brenda, Billand David

If you would like to read more:

 
Here are the Opening Comments from TICK’s address to the community, which will show you why it is urgent that you take the three simple steps he recommends:   ATTEND, SIGN and CONTRIBUTE.
 
Tick Segerblom’s Opening Comments from the VIDEO:
Hi. I am Assemblymen Tick Segerblom.  I represent the area that includes the National Golf Course and I know that there an issue coming up with respect to the development of the golf course I wanted to talk to you about that. 
First thing is that I strongly oppose any type of development of the golf course.  It was obviously built to be a golf course; that was the intention of everyone at the time to be a golf course in perpetuity. The houses were built to be on the golf course and the fact that now it turns out that there maybe be some loophole where they could destroy the golf course and build houses there I think is totally unacceptable and personally I will do anything I can to make sure that doesn’t happen.
Second thing is, it is my understanding that right now the Owner of the golf course is brought forth plans to create a tentative map for the golf course which would show that a housing development is intended for the golf course; and I think it is very critical that the homeowners that oppose that idea come forward right now and stand up.  Because based upon my knowledge of the law, once that tentative map is approved, if it is approved, then it will be too late to fight as to whether there is a right to build houses there.  Right now the property is zoned R-1, but there is a legal question of whether because that was how this development was first made a golf course, whether there can be houses.  But once a tentative map is approved, then that means that the county has acknowledge that the golf course can be developed as a housing project.  There still needs to be some issues with respect to the size of the lots and how many lots, and drainage and things like that, but fact is the county would be saying basically to the developer, “yes we agree, this is appropriate to be residential housing.”  And so once that is done, then that’s over with – the horse is out of the barn, and so we need to make sure that doesn’t happen in my opinion.
Below, Mr. Knott’s Letter to Residents
Dear Neighbor,
As you know, CV Golf, LLC and KH Capital II, LLC have owned the Las Vegas National golf course for approximately one year. I would like to take this opportunity to update you on the progress that we have been making and some of the challenges we will be facing in the near future.

The biggest news to date is that we reached agreement with Harrah’s to manage the golf course on our behalf! Harrah’s owns other golf courses such as Rio Secco and Cascata in Clark County and a few other courses nationally. Eric Dutt heads up Harrah’s Golf and, interestingly, he learned to play the game on Las Vegas National. A relationship with Harrah’s is important for two primary reasons – i) based on our existing relationship with Harrah’s, we have confidence that they will treat the golf course well; and ii) we believe they will increase the number of tourists playing golf at our course. As we hoped, Harrah’s involvement is having a positive impact as we are now getting approximately 50% of our play from tourists. However, we still need to grow the number of rounds being played by about 20% from the solid base that exists today.

In addition to contracting with Harrah’s, we have renewed our relationships with several Internet booking services. While we hope to do a better job of promoting the golf course ourselves, there is no question that Internet booking services do help fill the course. We also have offered promotions to locals and have received a good response.

Currently we are constructing a call center that will help market and sell golf times and events for all of Harrah’s courses, including Las Vegas National. We expect this effort to increase revenue next year and reduce our reliance on the Internet booking services. We also have named Vic Welk as our head golf professional. Vic is well known in local golf circles as a leading instructor and as a winner on the Nationwide Tour. He has a strong following of students of all ages and abilities. We are looking forward to building our teaching business with Vic at the helm.

We have finalized our plans to remodel the clubhouse but, unfortunately, the current economy does not allow us to undertake the remodel at this time. We had hoped to start the remodel while we are closed for overseeding from August 18th to September 4th. Hopefully we will be able to complete the remodel next year. As I have always said, our ability to generate the necessary profitability to maintain the golf course is dependent in significant part upon the success of our bar and restaurant. The remodel will help but we must be ready to offer the right food at the right price with exceptional service. We continue to work on these issues. Attached are copies of the new menu and our weekend brunch and specials menu. I encourage each of you to come by for breakfast or lunch or just to say “hi”.

We have developed a business plan to pursue a relationship with an equipment manufacturer. We believe that Las Vegas National offers golf equipment manufacturers a unique opportunity. When you consider that we have more than 20,000 rounds from tourist golfers and provide approximately 7,500 golfers with rental clubs, we hope golf equipment manufacturers will want to partner with us to have their products featured at Las Vegas National. Finally, we have had preliminary discussions with someone who is interested in completely redoing and upgrading Las Vegas National. This would include the clubhouse and the golf course. We do not know where these discussions will lead, but if we are to reach an agreement, it will happen before the end of the year.

As you can see we are working hard to make the golf course successful. This remains the focus of our efforts. All of our investors agree that we should work diligently to see if the golf course profitability can be increased to a level that would justify continuing to operate the golf course well into the future.

While we have made good progress in several areas, we are facing a very important challenge. When we acquired the property we obtained a two-year loan that comes due in August, 2009. Given the current capital markets we expect refinancing the property to be difficult. When we arranged our purchase loan there were two values — the operating golf course and the underlying land that is zoned R-1. The value of the residential use is higher than the value of the golf course (although as shown above we continue to enhance its value). As an example, Painted Desert just sold for $9.0 million and Rhodes Ranch is on the market for $12 million. If we are not able to claim the residential use value, all of our investors will likely need to invest additional equity. If the ownership group invests additional equity, the pressure will grow to achieve maximum value at the earliest possible date and this could impair our ability to give us every chance to improve the golf course profitability over the next few years.

Given our financing circumstances, we are constrained to submit a tentative map to Clark County. This tentative map shows residential lots on the golf course. If the County approves the tentative map, we will be able to demonstrate to the lender that we have obtained certain development rights, and therefore we will be able to minimize the challenges we would otherwise face next year in renewing our loan.

Please understand that at this time we do not have any intention of closing the golf course or pursuing the development of the tentative map. We would agree on the record that residential construction would not begin for three years. This additional time will allow us to see if we can improve the golf course profitability, which I have stated repeatedly is our desire and goal. I hope this update and information has been helpful. I hope you will be able to stop by the golf course and check out our new menu. If you have any questions, please call me at (702)369-4860 or email me at john.knott@cbre.com. I will be as responsive as possible but please be patient as I travel fairly often.

Sincerely,
John Knott