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Redevelopment of Raffles Country Club to see Singapore lose another golf course
The 143 hectare 36-hole golf course at Singapore’s Raffles Country Club (RCC) is to be redeveloped as part of the upcoming Singapore-Kuala Lumpur high-speed rail (HSR) project.
The Lakes Golf Course will be the second golf course, after the Jurong Country Club, to be acquired by the Singapore Government for the major transport link.
After a review by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and the Singapore Land Authority (SLA), the golf course will be vacated in the middle of 2018 with its site having been found to be the most suitable location for the new crossing of the Johor Strait and for the tunnel portal leading to the underground tunnels that will take the HSR to the centre of the city.
Singapore’s golf courses, of which there were 22 in 2001, face massive pressure as the Singapore Government looks to free up land to accommodate its development plans.
Of Singapore’s 17 current courses, in addition to the two courses that will be lost to the HSR project, the Keppel Club and Marina Bay Golf Club will be redeveloped when their leases expire in the next 10 years.
Thereafter, the Orchid Country Club's lease, which expires in 2021, will be renewed for another nine years to 2030, after which there will be no further extension.
R'ST Research Director Ong Kah Seng told local media that golf courses and club members may increasingly have to accept the "sad reality" of uncertainty in their membership and tenure of their golf clubs.
He explained “if they think about hopping to another club, this string of club closures affected by infrastructure and other pressing new developments will make them wonder if the new club can offer them any certainty in membership."
Singapore Golf Association (SGA) President Ross Tan said the acquisition is disappointing for golf in the country. There are currently about 36,000 golfers with a handicap here.
Tan explained "my reaction is one of disbelief.
“SGA's duty, as a national sports association, to grow the sport, will be badly affected.”
Golf courses in Hong Kong face similar development pressures with the 9-hole Skycity Nine Eagles Golf Course adjacent to the Honh Kong International Airport closed last year to make way an airport retail and hotel expansion.
Images: The Lake Course at Raffles Country Club
31st August 2016 - HILTON OFFERS NEW AND EXCLUSIVE GOLF EXPERIENCES IN ASIA
28th July 2016 - EUROPEAN AND ASIAN GOLF TOURS ANNOUNCE STRATEGIC ALLIANCE
22nd December 2014 - HONG KONG GOLF CLUB FACES UNCERTAIN FUTURE
15th December 2014 - SINGAPORE TO LOSE TWO GOLF COURSES IN NEXT 10 YEARS
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