Even as the golfer Tiger Woods prepares to get back into competition at the beginning of 2017, the “second phase” of his career with TGR is making strides as well. Following successful unveilings of golf courses designed in Texas and Mexico, Woods has received the nod in the renovation of two 9-hole Chicago golf courses that have aspirations of hosting PGA Tour events.
Jackson Park and South Shore will be renovated by Woods’ TGR Design firm and combined into an 18-hole championship course.
As first reported by the Tribune, Woods has committed to be the lead designer. In a statement released by TGR Design, Woods said: “This project can create incredible possibilities for the community on the South Side. We want to design a course that everyone will enjoy.”
And on Sunday, Mayor Rahm Emanuel will announce the formation of the Chicago Parks Golf Alliance (CPGA), a nonprofit charged with improving Chicago Park District courses and golf facilities, expanding youth golf programs and, most significantly, raising money to make the Jackson Park/South Shore project a reality.
The project comes with a price tag of about $30 million, not including the cost of building a tunnel at 67th Street to connect the courses and another under South Jeffrey. Chicago Park District Superintendent Michael Kelly said the goal is to have an 80/20 percent split of private and public money.
The $60 million Maggie Daley Park was funded with $40 million from the park district and $20 million in private donations, according to the city.
Groundbreaking at South Shore is aimed for the spring, with hopes to complete the 18-hole championship course, plus either a short course or par-3 course, in 2020.
An initial routing plan obtained by the Tribune has the No. 1 tee box at Jackson Park, not far from the planned $500 million Barack Obama Presidential Center. Sources said President Obama became personally involved in the Jackson Park/South Shore project when he placed a call to Woods, encouraging him to serve as lead designer.
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