Michael Horne
Plenty of Horne

Abele Quietly Changes Brown Deer Park

Circular road through park becomes dead end to create golf driving range.

By - May 5th, 2016 02:42 pm
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Brown Deer Park Driving Range Expansion Plans.

Brown Deer Park Driving Range Expansion Plans.

Fore! A driving range in Brown Deer Park will slice through an existing mile-plus circular roadway, cutting about 300 feet out of the circuit that rings the 362-acre, 1929 masterpiece designed by Alfred C. Boerner. No longer will bicyclists, rollerbladers and motorists be able to enjoy the circuit, an integral part of the park’s design. Instead, travellers will be faced with dead-end signs at two places of what will soon become a horseshoe-shaped road if the public does not stop this proposal.

The roadway will be severed at its southern end to allow the expansion of a driving range at the county golf course, a significant revenue generator, and a former site of PGA-sanctioned tournaments.

The golf course already has a perfectly fine driving range, built to PGA specifications two decades ago, but…”it’s not used because it is located just on the other side of [the] roadway. Cars and walkers have become accustomed to using the roadway, and even large barriers and signs do not dissuade them from using the path while golf balls whiz over their heads during special tournaments,” we learn from an article in Brown Deer NOW! of March 31st, the only coverage the story has had. “The driving range is an embarrassment,” Milwaukee County Parks Director John Dargle told the publication.

“This is a hands-down, No. 1 priority for long-term customer satisfaction and revenue — more than anything else that could happen at Brown Deer,” said Brown Deer Golf Pro Andrew Barrett.

The customers Barrett wants to satisfy are those who pay to golf in the park, the third-largest in the Milwaukee County Parks System.

Brown Deer Park. Photo from Google.

Brown Deer Park. Photo from Google.

The offensive roadway, however, has always been free to park visitors. Its circular design is integral to the park as a whole and derives directly from the precepts of Frederick Law Olmsted, and Charles B. Whitnall, the driving force behind the Milwaukee County Parks System. Was there no other way to create the desired driving range?

Cutting off the circular roadway is a significant change to the traffic pattern of the park, and of the area as well. No longer will vehicles be able to enter at Range Line Road to head west in an area where intersections that actually lead somewhere are few and far between. An additional four minutes would be added to a ride through the park for those headed from Range Line Road to Teutonia Avenue and the pleasant comforts of the Thirsty Fox Tavern.

Where Were the Hearings?

The matter was brought to my attention by a relative who lives on Range Line Road and who happened upon the story after noticing some activity at the park.

I checked and found no mention of the project on the county park website. Nor did I see it mentioned in the capital budget of the parks. There was a hearing on March 29 that discussed the change, but there was scant mention of the road turning into a dead end, with an emphasis on how this will increase safety for golfers and pedestrians by reducing the area shared by both types of traffic. I can’t help thinking there should be more discussion of a plan to close off an 80-year-old road that has well and freely served a community for so long.

I contacted the office of the county executive on April 25th for more information. Work is to begin this month on the $100,000 project, half of which is to be financed by Cardinal Stritch University — why so little discussion of this?

Abele Administration Response

I sent this message to Melissa Baldauff of the Abele communications staff: “I would like to know more about the plans to close off the circular drive which has been an integral part of this park‘s design from the inception. Please inform me of all public meetings that were held on this matter.”

The only response I received was this, on the next day: “Sorry I’m just getting to a response here – was out of the office most of yesterday. I will work on getting this info together for you.”

Eight days later and I have heard nothing.

A Response from the Board Chairman

Meanwhile, over the past few days the area has been staked, and earth-moving equipment has been spotted at the site. I wondered if the County Board had been involved with this major change to an urban greenway, so I contacted Board Chair Theo Lipscomb. His district nearly entirely circles the park, which itself has no residents. The park itself is in the 2nd Supervisory district of Sequanna Taylor, and she’s only been in office for a couple of weeks.

I wrote: “The circular drive at Brown Deer Park, an integral feature of Albert Boerner’s plan, is being severed to expand a golf range. I saw no mention of this in budget, work proposed or public hearing notices. … Did you support this Abele proposal?

Lipscomb, who is rarely an ally of Abele, sent this response: “A public hearing is not required for each project. However I would definitely say that this one wasn’t presented in detail at the time that money was appropriated. Not sure there’s anything I’ll be able to do at this stage, but I’d certainly like to learn more.”

So would the public.
Categories: Plenty of Horne

39 thoughts on “Plenty of Horne: Abele Quietly Changes Brown Deer Park”

  1. Carl says:

    Hard to believe they would close off the only road through the park! What a bizarre, goofy idea. And without allowing any public input. Who are these guys?

  2. Sam says:

    4 extra minutes? I get that it’s a change to the original design, but it seems to me the fix was in 20 years ago when they put the range in. A small change, but one that accommodates an active use for the space without destroying another active use for the space. Seems like a no-brainer.

    I’d like to know what that giant pad of pavement is on the southeast corner of the lagoon.

  3. M says:

    This sounds like the shape of things to come as all county parks transition to valuing and supporting only functions that generate income. Golfers rule the roost in Brown Deer and will do so in any park with a course. Is there anyone in the parks department, much less the whole Abele administration, who’s a fan of Alfred Boerner or cares about how he worked to design a delightful park experience for those traveling through it, whether by foot, bike rollerblades or car. Boerner was an inveterate populist and he seemed to like Olmsted’s aesthetic.

    Even Milwuaukee’s Olmsted-designed parks have gotten carved up and there’s a lot of “c’est la vie.” Yes, money talks, even with our parks. But contemtuously cutting out the public completely–that’s just an M.O. to make sure no citizens throw a wrench in the works, in a carefully-laid, top-down scheme.

    Perhaps it’s a big deal that it this was actually covered in Brown Deer NOW! (maybe a crack investigative journalist sniffed it out). Otherwise Michael Horne would have heard about it when his relative saw all the heavy machinery rolling in.

    So let’s enjoy our other parks and scenic parkways (without barricades) while they last. I hear they plan to build condos inches from the bike trail in Shorewood. And the County Grounds are being gobbled up bit by bit. Will there be any money for crumbling infrastructure in Lake Park or elsewhere? It’s death by a thousand cuts…

  4. Reader says:

    This SAFE roadway will no longer be open in winter for cars or pedestrians. Now more will be forced onto congested dangerous intersections. That alleged 4 minutes will be like 15.
    How come cowardly Abele did not ask our (& America’s) Sheriff’s Clarke what the impact will be on public safety? Afraid of the truth no doubt!! Or protecting miscreants.
    Just another example of the big guys exploiting the masses for the privileged few.

  5. Michael says:

    So is the road an integral part of the park or just a shortcut for Range Road resident? If your relative didn’t live on that road, and have to drive the long way around the loop to get to Tetonia, would this article exist?

  6. M says:

    Michael (#5), Range Line Road is absolutely intergral to the park’s design. This obit of landscape architect Alfred Boerner (below) said he considered Brown Deer one of his biggest challenges. He would traipse through every square inch of a landscape to make the most of its assets. Boerner devoted his entire career to designing great Milwaukee parks (including Whitnall and Estabrook).

    This meandering parkway, the only road through the park, is as a key part of an orchestrated experience, as were all parkways in Milwaukee County. This is not a minor change to the park’s design but is being treated as no big deal. It sounds like there was no effort to move that section of the road to retain a pleasing flow and not inconvenience park visitors and create safety hazards.

    https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1368&dat=19550619&id=ZHBIAAAAIBAJ&sjid=OhAEAAAAIBAJ&pg=7223,1256347&hl=en

  7. AG says:

    I really really do not enjoy agreeing with Mr. Horne, but in this case my bias to want to argue with his perspective can not prevail. The loop around the park really is a key characteristic and I do not think it should be unceremoniously chopped apart for a money making feature. There must have been other options to place the driving range or reconstruct the road around it in a pleasing way.

  8. John Jansen says:

    This is outrageous! Government operating in the dark and once again Theo Lipscomb is clueless.

  9. Dave says:

    The small piece they are removing (for what?…and extra 20 yards of driving range?) is utilized by all from the south and east to access golf club house, tennis courts, lagoon pavilion, soft ball fields and disc golf course. This is pretty absurd.

  10. Barbara says:

    How sad that Abele wants to quasi-privatize the public trust that is our park system. “Public” means just that — for the public, the entire public. Running the parks as private ventures robs the public. If we need more funding for the parks, then we need a dedicated tax for them. What happened to the referendum for one? As I recall, it passed but was stopped by the administration.

    Imagine if Central Park in New York, an Olmsted park, had been built with a golf course. And imagine if the main roadway through that park was about to be severed for a driving range people would have to pay to use.

    Yes, this is a big deal. If the county supervisor for that district is so new, who was supervisor when all this was going down?

  11. Jeff Ehlers says:

    This is probably a precursor to selling or leasing the golf course and club house to a private operator which, I believe has been previously proposed. Are there any plans to improve the lagoon and old boat house? There used to be boat rentals there during the summer and a great place to ice skate in the winter.

  12. BobbyL says:

    It’s interesting to see that the County somehow has secured funds for this ambitious project, especially in light of the way the course – and the park itself – has undergone a slow but noticeable decline over the past few years. Rusted posts, rotting bridges, cut-rate fixes, and downsized landscaping projects have made a once beautifully maintained course look more than a little threadbare. The tennis court is nothing short of disgraceful. Even the roadway around the park is a maze of potholes and broken curbs that are downright hazardous for pedestrians and bikers. To spend this much money and resources for what is reported to be a sport in decline, enjoyed by relatively few, seems ridiculous.

  13. BobbyL says:

    It’s interesting to see that the County somehow has secured funds for this ambitious project, especially in light of the way the course – and the park itself – has undergone a slow but noticeable decline over the past few years. Rusted posts, rotting bridges, cut-rate fixes, and downsized landscaping projects have made a once beautifully maintained course look more than a little threadbare. The tennis court is nothing short of disgraceful. Even the roadway around the park is a maze of potholes and broken curbs that are downright hazardous for pedestrians and bikers.

    To spend this much money and resources for what is reported to be a sport in decline, enjoyed by relatively few, seems ridiculous.

  14. SP says:

    If there is one thing I have always been told when it relates to investments, it is not to invest in a golf course. They bleed money especially public courses that don’t have membership fees to rely on. As far as the boats and the ice skating, I can only assume some kind of lawsuit in the past got those shut down, you don’t see any public ice rinks anymore and that’s not just Milwaukee. At least they aren’t charging us to park there yet, I was recently in Wausau, $8 an hour to park on Rib Mountain to hike the trail.

  15. Virginia Small says:

    SP: The county still offers ten outdoor ice skating options, both on lagoons and land-based rinks like Red Arrow and Lake Park. Not sure why ones at Brown Deer, Whitnall and elsewhere have closed.

    http://county.milwaukee.gov/OutdoorIceSkating11929.htm

    Despite comments here about trends in golf, including in public parks, the county’s courses are the system’s biggest money makers and perhaps that will continue, even if usage wanes. However, the county also struggles to keep up with the maintenance of ALL park facilities.

    Of course, golf courses lose business when they are not well maintained. Based on Michael’s reporting, it appears a calculated decision was made to serve golfers at Brown Deer and not worry about other visitors to the park.

  16. Cecilia says:

    This is terrible news. I enjoy driving through Brown Deer Park on a regular basis and notice how much this park is used. Disc golf, fishing, soccer, baseball, volley ball, lacrosse, people walking, running, riding bikes, roller blading, enjoying picnics all summer long, kids using the playground, etc. Its not just used by golfers. What a rotten shame that Milwaukee County let this park deteriorate. The road is so filled with potholes its like driving through a bombed out road in Afghanistan. I understand the people making these decisions don’t use the public park system. I’m sure they enjoy their spacious yards and vacation homes but the rest of us who live in small houses or apartments should be able to utilize the parks that our taxes pay for.

  17. Karen says:

    Someone stopped me in the park today to ask me if I was aware of this project, which I wasn’t. I am very angry that signs weren’t posted to notify the public! Why weren’t residents of River Hills, Brown Deer or Glendale notified about the hearing? Brown Deer Park is a public space and not a Private Country club, thus the city has no right making this decision without hearing what the public thinks about the change. And shame on Cardinal Stritch for donating money that could be spent on their College and students. How do we stop this project? Where do we go to appeal the decision?

  18. Reader says:

    Our best hope is Sheriff Clarke. It’s amazing that he allowed Lying Chris Abele to pull the cowboy hat over his eyes. He’s in charge of the publics safety in the park.How come he is silent? The Calumet road entrance already is prone to drainage issues. This will make it much much worse.

  19. M says:

    Karen, Cecilia & others,
    It sounds like the hearing was a quiet formality and perhaps did not go into any detail about the road closure. Or perhaps it was just an item presented at a county board meeting.

    The director of Milwaukee County Parks Dept., John Dargle, seems to be in charge of the project, with others in the Abele administration playing various roles. The author said Sequanna Taylor is the new county supervisor for this district. Theo Lipscomb is the county board chair and supervisor for the district bordering Brown Deer Park. They can all be contacted by email or phone; contact info is on the county’s website.

    Officials in Milwaukee or the park’s neighboring municipalities probably have no say in decisions about this project, although those who live nearby could express their concerns to county leaders as well as to local legislators.

    Cardinal Stritch wants to serve its golf program by “partnering” with the park. Perhaps they could be contacted about this plan’s potential communit impacts, though it’s not up to them to solicit public feedback on a county park project. But neighbors’ concerns may be of interest to college officials from a public relations standpoint.

  20. Alan says:

    What a horribly bad decision if it goes forward. Not much else to say…

  21. Kenneth says:

    Impeach!

  22. Gene Haas says:

    After giving this project much thought, I have concluded that it is NOT a favorable move. I don’t see a problem with the existing set up, even if it is not the most desirable arrangement for those daily gofers who desire to prepare their game by utilizing the range for this purpose. The safety factor is minimal, inasmuch as the park roadway is sparsely traveled and any oncoming traffic can easily be seen….and avoided. It’s a delightful ride, offering wonderful sights on both sides of the road, a HUGE departure from the city’s busy streets. If Cardinal Stritch’s golf team(s) will be using the golf range for practice purposes, I think the current setup will suffice. Perhaps not perfect….but adequate. Hopefully, County Exec Abele will take another in depth view of this project….leave it as is…and utilize the savings for another deserving project.

  23. Scott says:

    Yet another reason people are vacating the MKE county at a fast rate. HORRIBLE and DANGEROUS road conditions persist within the park and around the park (Bradley road). Brown Deer has shown how incompetent it is time and time again when it hires these contractors and HORRIBLE civil planners. (10 manhole covers under the “new” Bradley road. UGLY UGLY UGLY cement structures to prevent people from going to the side of people turning in front of a school (this was the villages answer after 2 children died), road “repairs” are in worse condition than before the “construction crew” could “repair” issues….the list goes on). The police only care about Walmart. The village only cares about money and the people only care about getting out. Good last decade brown deer. And if you voted for Abele, this is on you.

  24. dk mke says:

    I love the parks and love golfing at Brown Deer so can see both sides of this.

    The old range is inadequate, and it’s distance from the course is enough to dissuade some from using it. Even so, I’m not sure this is worth the disruption to the rest of the park.

    The ring road is lovely, no doubt. However other beautiful parks, such as Lake Park do not have any circular or through roads that run the length of the park, yet it is still one of the best. The loss of the ring is unfortunate, but it’s not something people can’t adjust to. As far as the short cut from Range Line to Teutonia, I really don’t find that inconvenience that relies on a county park road to be the resolution to be all that persuasive. It’s a park, not a bypass.

    At the end of the day, I guess I’d rather keep the road as is, but I’m not sure it’s the travesty described by some. I do agree some kind of public input is a must.

  25. Bruce says:

    I am appalled by the large number of short-sighted morons led by Mr. Horne’s article. Of course golfers rule the roost at Brown Deer, the golf course they pay to play on a regular basis greatly supports the entire parks system financially. Moreover, revenue generation and local partnerships (i.e. Cardinal Stritch University) support community commerce, successful community commerce leads to local growth, growth leads more businesses supporting an area and ultimately more support for our wonderful Milwaukee County Parks system that is already starved by a lack of financial support.

    Carl, there was an on-site public hearing about this project with every detail of change presented before all attendees.

    “Reader” – Drugs, theft and speeders are constant issue on these “safe” park roads you speak of. Limiting routes will deter unwanted and unsafe traffic freeing up more enjoyable experiences for those who appropriately use the public parks system.

    It sounds like many of you are using your dissatisfaction with Mr. Abele as an excuse to form narrow-minded attacks on any projects within the MKE Parks system. As a proud public park user and someone who attended the public hearing at Brown Deer, I 100% support this driving range project. I completely support any project like this that will bring more people into the park for golf or non-golf related activities. Let’s have a vision of the future rather than a memory of the past.

  26. Carl says:

    Bruce,

    Do you really think that you can present your views effectively by calling those with an opposing viewpoint “short-sighted morans?”

  27. Jeff Ehlers says:

    Bruce, when was the meeting held about the proposed changes to the road in Brown Deer Park? How were you notified? I ask because I live across the street from the park and don’t recall getting any notice. I do recall an article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel about a proposal to lease the clubhouse out to a private operator, but have not seen any follow up to that.

  28. Virginia Small says:

    The county has announced tentative plans for House of Golf to build a multimillion-dollar facility within Brown Deer Park, pending a signed agreement and fundraising efforts.

    http://www.jsonline.com/sports/golf/golf-house-of-wisconsin-planned-for-brown-deer-park-b99494650z1-302688531.html

    How might that project affect vehicular and pedestrian traffic within the park? Would a dead-ended parkway be beneficial or a hindrance? Even if golf brings in welcome cash for parks, Brown Deer is a 360-acre regional park with multiple uses and visitors coming from outside the neighborhood.

    If being future-oriented means catering mostly to paying customers and private “partners,” will the county start abandoning America’s sacrosanct tradition of parks serving everyone equally and being foundational to democracy? If so, will that be positive for Milwaukee County’s quality of life and economic future?

  29. dk mke says:

    This is a bit hyperbolic. No one won’t be able to use the parks. Also, parks change. Remember the velodrome?

  30. Virginia Small says:

    Yes, parks evolve, but such changes traditionally have been undertaken with great care, thought and meaningful public input. Is there no way to redirect Brown Deer’s parkway around a longer driving range?

    Retaining widespread access to parks is a concern nationwide, as well as what’s become in some places a two-tier system of parks–for “haves and have-nots.” In its most recent budget, the Wisconsin legislature shifted to our state parks being funded only through collected fees. I believe I read we are the only state that has completely “defunded” its state parks. Insiders say there’s a list of state parks not producing “sufficient income” that may close. (The fact that state parks contribute to tourism is apparently not part of the equation.)

    Running parks strictly on a “business model” is a major departure from the American tradition. Olmsted was adamant that, while there could be affordable fees for some services, restricting access and privatizing parks would not support the greater good, including local economies.

    Parks everywhere are facing financial challenges. Big public-policy questions involve how those challenges are approached and through what guiding principles.

  31. Bruce says:

    I may have let my emotions choose my early words in my previous post, but YES Carl, I do believe I have the right to be just as slanderous as the opposing viewpoint especially when their opinions have no factual support. Likewise, I believe it to be fair only when it is spelled correctly (MORONS, not morans). Thank you for reinforcing my point. I will be dilligent in the future to not use any more “name-calling” adjectives.

    Jeff: I do not recall the exact date of the meeting. I recall it was a Thursday night and I think it was either the last week of March or first week of April. As an active Brown Deer park user I saw a sign posted within the park. As for the idea of leasing the food and beverage side of operations at the course, you are partially correct. The county did pursue leasing it out to possibly have a year-round restaurant, in fact, a friend of mine was one of the prospective tenants. Upon further review, it is my understanding that the county moved forward with a complete renovation of their kitchen and will be opening soon still operating as MKE Parks system and still generating revenue to support the entire parks system.

    Virginia: That article is from May of last year. There was a proposal to move the WPGA section office and training center to Brown Deer. However, I know that the project is not moving forward at this time. I believe this to be a wonderful concept to move into the Brown Deer Park, but I also believe that such a large change needs further evaluation and planning.

    dk mke: “Parks change”, well said. Parks change, people change, the entire Earth is in a constant slow state of change. This is all tied to what Charles Darwin was thinking about when he theorized “Natural Law”, change or die, survival of the fittest.

    Thank you all for your input and response in the matter.

  32. Kevin says:

    Do you people realize that without the golf course revenue your beloved parka would not exist to the extent they do now. The county golf courses are one of the few profitable ventures in the county. The driving range at Brown Deer is horrible and has been in need of an upgrade for many years. The parkway is not being shut down just one road is closing. 4 minutes extra drive to potentially bring in 10s of thousands of more dollars for the parks to use to better all aspects of the parks system. You want the tennis courts to look better or the disc golf to be better well those areas are FREE to use and bring in no revenue why should they be improved for free loaders?

  33. Carl says:

    Kevin, There is a $5 per day fee to use County disc golf courses or $40 per year for an annual permit. These fees raised over $100,000 last year. Doesn’t sound like “free loading” to me. And most of the other “free loaders” are taxpayers meaning they are not free loaders either.

  34. Kevin says:

    I stand correct disc golf is revenue generating however not even close to the golf courses. Everyone pays taxes so that is a non argument. Paying taxes dosnt give you any rights. Why not take advantage of getting a $100,000 project done for half the price because cardinal stitch I’d willing to pay the other half.

  35. M says:

    Kevin,
    Citizens do in fact have rights regarding all public assets held in common (AKA the commons). Those rights are legally defensible. At the most basic level, citizens have rights and responsibilities of stewardship of those assets. Transparent democratic processes are the means to exercise that stewardship role.

    Citizens are not passive bystanders. Elected and appointed officials play roles in the process but do not get to call all the shots.

    This paper addresses issues about “enclosing the commons.”
    http://learcenter.org/pdf/PA_Report%5B1%5D.pdf

  36. Fred says:

    First, this writer has since admitted his information was not correct. Sad that journalism has lost its integrity. If this article was true, I’d upset like the many on this comment section.

    Did you know there was a published public hearing that you were able to go to for your voice to be heard? It wasn’t a secret, I was there.

    Did you know the Milwaukee County Parks golf courses generate almost 50% of the parks revenue for entire parks system? I think your tax money dominates the rest of it. Which includes the 150+ parks, public pools, AND disc golf. Golfers have a major impact on how nice your overall parks are. Golfers are good for you.

    Did you know that the current driving range is in very poor and extremely outdated? I laughed when he said it’s “perfectly fine” Please go check it out, even a non golfer will be able to easily relieve it’s not perfectly fine. It’s the worst driving range around.

    Do you know how much crime there is in Brown Deer Park? Drug deals and thief. What’s next? I challenge you to sit on a bench for a few hours and watch cars go around the circle and then see the same car pass you slowly time and time again. They are looking for opportunity to commit a crime. In fact, the clubhouse was broken into within the last month, cars robbed, and much more. Those numbers are increasing and times are unfortunately changing. The circle presents a danger.

    Walkers, bikers, and runners routines will not change one bit. I stand correct; they will no longer have cars racing by them and will be better for walkers, bikers and runners. The park should not be used as a commute, it’s a destination. I laughed again at the example on how a bar patron won’t be able to use the park afterward to drive home. Great! The reality is, this park will be safer and a percentage of crime will go down AND you will still have access to the entire park, just like in the past.

    I value my safety over a big circle. This driving range is just as important to non golfers as it is to golfers.

    This is not the first time something like this has happened. Greenfield Park for one. UW arboretum is another. They do this for safety reasons and when you see CARS, they are traveling to a destination where the bikers and runners still have total access to go to wherever they choose.

    Plus, the driving range will produce more revenue which can only help with taxes as cost rise?

    One thing I do agree on is the condition of the roads. They are poor. Keep in mind, this project is funded by donated money, not our tax money. Maybe the fight should be to use some of the new revenue to help pay for better roads in the park.

    Another thing I agree on is it is a beautiful park, and it still will be.

  37. Dave Reid says:

    @Fred The story mentions the 1 public hearing.

  38. Jeff Ehlers says:

    There is going to be a public meeting. “Come weigh in on the Abele Administration’s proposal to expand the driving range at Brown Deer Park and to permanently close a segment of the parkway that currently circles around the park.” This is from a flyer that I received on 05/26 from Supervisor Lipscomb and Supervisor Sequanna Taylor. The meeting is on Tuesday, June 7, 2016. 6:00-7:00 p.m. at the Brown Deer Park Clubhouse 7625 N Range Line Rd.

  39. David Scot says:

    It never ceases to amaze me when people comment on an article and issue when they only know 1 side of the story. The golf range at Brown Deer Park which is the Gold Standard course in the Milwaukee Park System is inadequate to say the least. As a golfer, I don’t like having to cross that busy road while playing golf at Brown Deer just to get to the driving range. In fact, the range is so poor I won’t even waste $5 to hit a bucket of balls at this range before my round. I can say however I would if the range was in good shape and had some targets to shoot at.

    When this was all built, “back in the day” I’m sure their was hardly any traffic on this particular section of the road and back then you couldn’t hit a ball that far. Today you can hit drivers through the end of the range into the trees (an issue for the grounds crew I’m sure..). Today, a lot of traffic goes back and forth on that road as people DO use it merely as a short cut. They’re NOT driving on this road to look at how pretty the trees are, I can guarantee that. For public safety, this proposal makes sense not only for golf curse patrons, but for those walking and riding bikes in the park etc… Less vehicle traffic in our parks means less risks of accidents, theft and a lot of other issues. I’ve been to hundreds of golf courses and none of them as I can recall make you cross a busy road to get to their range, after all, safety of ALL park patrons MUST be concern #1.

    There’s absolutely no reason in my mind why the park needs to be a pass through for traffic especially from the “Thirsty Fox” bar. Removing traffic from “passing through” and or “passing by” the Golf Course just makes good sense to me. The new range would absolutely provide more revenue for the Park System which is needed as there is no other driving range near Brown Deer Park. A new driving range would also bring more golfers to Brown Deer Park thus further increasing revenue as most golfers like to hit some balls before their round.

    Safety and Revenue are the main concerns I see in favor for this project. I don’t understand those commenting about where’s the public input and public hearings etc… I’d bet a paycheck that the majority of these commenting about public input won’t even go to the hearings on this matter. Not all public projects require nor demand public hearings. In my opinion, this one falls into that category.

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