Birdwood to undergo renovation, golf program facility construction

University of Virginia Foundation, Virginia Athletics Foundation are soliciting private donors for projects

ns-BirdwoodGolfCourse-CourtesyUVAToday

The privately-financed makeover will update the greens and irrigation systems, as well as expand the course for eligibility to professional championship play. 

Courtesy UVA Today | Courtesy UVA Today

The Birdwood Golf Course, home to both the University golf teams and a publicly-available facility housed at the Boar’s Head Resort, is scheduled to undergo renovations in the coming year. The privately-financed makeover will update the greens and irrigation systems, as well as expand the course for eligibility to professional championship play. Birdwood was originally built in 1984.

It’s unclear yet when the builders hope to begin work on the project, but Patrick Hogan, University executive vice president and chief operating officer,  has said that the target date for reopening is somewhere in fall 2019.

In January, a representative of the UVA Foundation presented the progress on Birdwood’s renovation to a committee of the Planning and Coordination Council, which includes Charlottesville City, Albemarle County and University officials. Birdwood is considered an “Area B” property, meaning that it’s considered of mutual importance to the all three parties.

The Boar’s Head Resort is owned by the UVA Foundation, which supports the University through real estate and financial services. The foundation also owns the UVA Research Park and several other local properties. 

The UVA Foundation is tied to the University: Several members of the foundation’s board of directors are appointed by the University Board of Visitors, and U.Va. had lent an interest-free $33.1 million to the foundation for property purchases as of June 30, 2017, according to the University’s annual finance report.  However, the foundation has full ownership of its properties and receives the entirety of the revenues.

“Revenues first pay for the direct cost of Birdwood Golf Course’s operation and to support discounted rates to students, faculty and UVA staff, and then to cover overhead services at Boars Head associated with Birdwood that include human resources, accounting, information technology and general management,” University Deputy Spokesperson Matt Charles said in an email to The Cavalier Daily. “If funds remain, they would be reinvested in the property,” 

None of the revenue from public use at Birdwood is received by either the men’s or women’s golf programs, according to Jim Daves, the assistant athletics director for media relations for both men’s and women’s golf programs.

The project comes alongside a brand-new $8.7 million facility for the University golf teams, which is privately-financed through donations to the Virginia Athletics Foundation. The two-story facility will have indoor hitting bays, a putting studio, a club repair room and video analysis bays. 

The right to name the facility — with a minimum required gift of $2.5 million — has been reserved, though Hogan’s office did not respond for comment on who has made that reservation, nor when the money will be formally donated. 

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