The recent movement to pave over the back nine of Newport Beach Golf Course for overflow airport parking at John Wayne is not only a bad idea, it's just the beginning of the long-term consequences from the El Toro decision. For now, let's skip the long-term consequences and focus on the "bad idea" side of the ledger.
The golf course is a "par 3" public golf course. Par 3 courses differentiate themselves from regular courses by being shorter in overall length, easier to play and able to accommodate more golfers from a broader spectrum of abilities — all this at a very affordable price. Bottom line, this type of facility is where most golfers learn to play the game.
Southern California has precious few of these "starter" facilities. The golf course is the only one in this area. Paving over the back nine would reduce the facility's capacity by 50%. This decision would negatively affect many thousands of golfers per year. We must seek other solutions.
Here's one idea — there's a great park that already has lots of paved acreage. Perhaps everyone who voted against El Toro would volunteer to park there and take the bus to John Wayne.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Brennan is the publisher of Golf Tips magazine.
http://www.dailypilot.com/articles/2007 ... lbag20.txt