Plans submitted for Pitch n Putt and Commercial driving range at Neangar Park

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The plans were submitted to the City of Greater Bendigo this week for the nine-hole course and 250-metre driving range, with a total project cost of $325,000.

After required vegetation removal is complete, the driving range is scheduled to open in May and the pitch ‘n putt course – featuring holes varying in length from 45 metres to 80 metres – to open in 15 months.

The project is dependent on a Sports Australia grant, but Neangar Park Golf Club president Phil DeAraugo said they are confident they have put forward a compelling case.

He said the project was the ideal way to secure the future viability of the club and golf in Bendigo.

“It’s really around trying to broaden the appeal of golf and trying to bring new people to the game, particularly kids and women,” Mr DeAraugo said.

“It’s about securing the future. We want to keep golf as affordable as we can, too.

“It costs money to operate a golf course, so we want to look at ways to diversify our income.”

The closest pitch ‘n putt courses are believed to be in Waverley and Geelong.

The pitch ‘n putt course would be built on the west and south side of a dam towards the southern end of the Neangar Park Golf Course grounds. It uses part of an existing driving range, along with some vegetation removal in the area.

The pitch 'n putt course will largely be built on and around an existing driving range.

The pitch ‘n putt course will largely be built on and around an existing driving range.

The club believes its proposal has minimised vegetation loss and gave a preferable outcome to other golf courses which “are essentially large areas of grass fields”.

A disused machinery shed will be demolished, along with a brick toilet.

Mr DeAraugo said clubs and balls would be available for hire and non-members would be able to access the facilities, along with professional coaching at the driving range.

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