HomeGolfAmsterdam selects golf course clubhouse design estimated to cost $1.54M

Amsterdam selects golf course clubhouse design estimated to cost $1.54M


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The council unanimously approved the design at a special meeting, setting the project up for full engineering work by Saratoga Associates before the plans are sent out to bid for construction.

The selected design calls for a 3,870-square-foot indoor and outdoor facility with seating for up to 150 patrons. The building will have sliding panel doors enabling interior spaces to serve as open air rooms. An outdoor patio overlooking the course would take advantage of the view. It would also feature a bar, full commercial kitchen, bathrooms, and fireplaces or fire pits.

“It’s going to be the nicest clubhouse in the region, for the nicest golf course in the region. There’ll be nothing to compare it with,” Mayor Michael Cinquanti said. “The doors are going to open up to a beautiful view, and when it’s chilly, the doors are going to close up and you’re going to light a couple of fires and it’s going to be a cozy atmosphere.”

It’s an additional concept that was developed by designers based on feedback from three initial options bringing together favored elements and addressing shortcomings of the other proposals at an estimated cost believed by officials to be affordable.

“It is very nice. It is complementary to the course. I think the people and the golfers will be happy with it. The golf course is open to everyone, it’s not just the select few, so we can all have the opportunity to enjoy the golf course and the facilities that we’re looking to build there,” 3rd Ward Alderwoman Irene Collins said. “You have to have a clubhouse. It adds to the value of the course.”

Construction of the clubhouse will be paid for with a $1 million bond approved by the council last week and a $300,000 grant secured by state Sen. Neil Breslin, D-Bethlehem. Additional funding is still being sought.

The annual debt service for the bond will depend on the terms and interest rate when the money is borrowed. A 10-year bond would result in an annual repayment cost of around $110,000, Cinquanti said. A 15-year bond would have a lower repayment cost in the $70,000 range.

“I feel very confident that the cost of doing this can be absorbed by the operation of the golf course, by the increased business this will bring to the golf course and the increased revenue it will bring to the city via the concessionaire, and I think that will pay for the financing of this project,” Cinquanti said.

The city receives 8% of gross sales exceeding $1,000 each month as part of the contract with present course concessionaire Megan Podrazik, of Megabites Events. The agreement provides her the right of first refusal to become concessionaire at the future clubhouse.

Some building features are still being considered with elements to potentially be adjusted to keep the project within the targeted $1.54 million construction budget. Items under review include the kitchen design, the number of fireplaces and the inclusion of a full heating, ventilation and air conditioning system.

Project designers are expected to provide an estimate for a full HVAC system in the near future, along with details on a potential grant opportunity to fund the expense, Cinquanti said.

Fifth Ward Alderman James Martuscello said air conditioning and heating are essential components the construction project must include. Otherwise, he indicated, there will be complaints about the oversight at the brand-new building.

“You need air conditioning. In the summertime, people are playing golf all day and come in from the heat … they don’t want to go into a building that’s like an oven,” Martuscello said.

While it’s generally agreed those systems are needed to make the clubhouse comfortable during the regular golf season, Martuscello and Collins would not support the facility becoming a year-round venue due to the costs and maintenance associated with continuing operations at the site in the winter.

“We need our people working on the streets during the wintertime, maintaining the roads,” Collins said. “That’s just an added location to take care of.”

The construction timeline will be determined as the full engineering designs are completed and the project is sent out to bid. It is targeted for opening sometime during the 2025 golf season in order to finally replace the former clubhouse.

“The fact we are now in control makes me feel a whole lot better,” Martuscello said. “We’re not dependent on anybody else, we’re in control of the building, we’re in control of the money and now we can finally get something done.”

The former building suffered significant water damage from burst pipes and was sold by the city to Lance Orcutt in 2021 for the anticipated construction of a modern replacement facility. The city applied the $1.6 million insurance payout from the water damage to the accumulated budget deficit at the golf course.

The former building was demolished by Orcutt to make way for new construction that never materialized despite terms of the sale requiring the replacement clubhouse to be built by May 1, 2022. The city reacquired the land last fall and filled the hole where the former building stood this spring while developing plans for a new clubhouse.

“We had an agreement with someone to build a truly special clubhouse that the city never would have been able to build on our own and … he failed to obey the terms of that contract,” Cinquanti said. “We tried it once, we’re moving on from there.”

The long absence of a clubhouse has been a point of frustration and disappointment amongst golfers and community members.

“You have to have a clubhouse. It adds to the value of the course,” Collins said. “We’re moving in the right direction to address that and it’s definitely a venue that will be beautiful and will bring people and people of the city can enjoy.”

Now, Cinquanti said the city is positioned to construct a new facility suiting the course and taking advantage of the view rather than trying to refurbish a “destroyed” building. He added that the project alongside other efforts to enhance and add amenities at the course is aimed at ensuring the recreational “asset” is self-sustaining in the future.

“It’s an attraction to our community,” Cinquanti said. “It’s a treasure worth preserving, but we have to be able to afford to preserve it and that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Rendering of proposed clubhouse design.

Amsterdam Clubhouse rendering

Rendering of proposed clubhouse design.

Amsterdam Clubhouse rendering

Rendering of proposed clubhouse design.

Amsterdam Clubhouse rendering

Rendering of proposed clubhouse design.

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