On Feb. 15, 2022, Santa Rosa City Council approved the Bennett Valley Golf Course (BVGC) Ad Hoc Committee recommendation, to pursue the solicitation of a single management agency with a full-service agreement to operate and maintain both the golf course and restaurant/event facility under a three-to-five-year contract.
“The Ad Hoc Committee has developed a comprehensive scope of services to help guide selection of and lay the groundwork for a smooth operator transition,” said Mayor Chris Rogers. “We need to give this asset an opportunity to shine and grow.”
With Councils’ approval to proceed, City staff will begin seeking Request for Proposals as early as March 1 for selection and placement of a single management agency prior to the expiration of the current golf operator agreement on June 30, 2022.
The restaurant/event facility remained in continuous operation from 2005 until December 2020, however, as a result of the pandemic, the restaurant operator requested early termination of their agreement which was granted by the City in December 2020. The golf operator’s agreement expires June 30, 2022 and the operator is not seeking renewal or extension of the golf operations agreement.
The BVGC Ad Hoc Committee and City staff, in coordination with the National Golf Foundation (NGF), have developed a scope of services for the solicitation of the future management agency. Soliciting for a single operator with a full-service management agreement will provide a revenue source to support BVGC and restaurant /event facility as a self-sustaining enterprise while allowing the City to use incentives to elevate the level of operations with strong accountability.
“Today, Bennet Valley Golf Course is a functional course” said council member John Sawyer. “However, we must look toward the future. We have an opportunity to make this a better course and we have an obligation to make this a self-sustaining property.”
As identified by the NGF representative, large-scale capital upgrades are necessary to continue full year-round operations of the golf course and event facility. The Ad Hoc committee agreed that a three-to-five-year short-term management contract will give the City time to plan for the long-term future of BVGC, including preparation of a site Master Plan by a golf course architect to identify and plan for short and long-term improvements.
In late spring 2022, City staff will return to Council to request necessary funds to initiate the Master Plan process to plan for necessary large-scale capital upgrades of BVGC in two phases. Phase One involves completion of a full site Master Plan, and with community input, create a priority ranking for capital investments. Phase two is the undertaking of the improvements that may result in the temporary closure of golf operations to complete the improvements.
Bennett Valley Golf Course is a 150-acre, 18-hole golf course with a driving range, pro shop, and restaurant with banquet rooms located in southeast Santa Rosa. The golf course is a par 75, 6,500-yard course from the tips and was built in 1969 on heavy clay soil. The indoor restaurant/banquet area can be sectioned into three separate rooms and includes an outdoor patio dining area overlooking the golf course. The golf course and restaurant/event facility share a large parking lot with Galvin Community Park, a highly active park with tennis, pickleball, soccer, baseball, a dog park, playground, picnic sites and a fly-casting pond. For additional details visit srcity.org/BVGC
The City of Santa Rosa operates and maintains over 70 parks totaling over 1,000 acres, plus trails and open spaces; srcity.org/Parks