Poplar Creek prices may climb

Fees to play at Poplar Creek Golf Course in San Mateo could rise for the second time in six months as city officials continue to look for ways to increase revenues.

San Mateo City Manager Susan Loftus said different options will be discussed with the City Council early in the new year.

“I don’t know the amount or when the increase will go into effect,” she said. “We’re at a point where we could make many cost efficiencies as possible to balance expenses and raise revenue.”

Loftus said the city-run course is an enterprise-fund facility, meaning it needs to be self-supporting, covering its costs with its own
revenues.

Bill Feeley, president of the board of directors for the golf club, said he was not aware that the city was considering a fee hike. He said fees for the club had just been raised by $3 at the end of summer.

Current fees for residents start at $30 for weekday play and go up to $38 on weekends. Nonresidents pay $35 Monday through Thursday and $48 on weekends, Friday through Sunday.

“Any time prices are raised, people will be concerned,” he said. “If our [club] fees were going to be raised again, I think we’d be notified.”

Poplar Creek Golf Club, formerly San Mateo Golf Club, is located east of U.S. Highway 101 off Peninsula Avenue, near Coyote Point recreation area. It has 18 holes and is a par-70.

Fees at Poplar are considerably lower than at Harding Park Golf Course, a municipal setting in San Francisco where PGA Tour events have been held.  A round of golf there, Monday through Friday, costs $135. Poplar is slightly more expensive, however, than Sharp Park Golf Course in Pacifica — which is also run by San Francisco — where the standard weekday fee is $31.

Half Moon Bay resident Diana Volpini-Allen, who golfs at Poplar, said she’s not surprised to hear of the potential increase and that she supports it if it means the course will be maintained at the same level.

“Poplar is inexpensive, but of course, Poplar is a municipal course,” she said. “Prices can’t remain the same if everything else goes up around it.”

The course was originally built in 1933 and underwent a $10 million renovation in 2000, according to city documents.

This summer, city officials looked at the course’s expenses and considered privatizing many of the maintenance services to help save money, but decided against the proposal.

 

Tee fees

The fee for a round at Poplar Creek Golf Course may be increased; here’s how its costs compare to other municipal golf courses nearby:

Poplar Creek
Monday through Thursday General: $35
Friday through Sunday: $48

Harding Park
Monday through Thursday Standard: $135
Friday through Sunday: $155

Sharp Park
Monday through Thursday Standard: $31
Friday through Sunday: $36

Sources: Poplar Creek Golf Course, Harding Park Golf Course, Sharp Park Golf Course

akoskey@sfexaminer.com

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