Tuckaway plans $3.2 million golf course upgrade

Project to make course more competitive for hosting tournaments

Tuckaway Country Club in Franklin recently installed an outdoor dining area over looking the golf course.

Last updated on July 3rd, 2019 at 07:12 pm

Tuckaway Country Club in Franklin is set to begin a $3.2 million renovation of its golf course.

Tuckaway Country Club in Franklin recently installed an outdoor dining area overlooking the golf course.

The club’s 423 members voted to approve the project on Nov. 16, and the work will begin soon, said Dan Kwiecinski, president of Tuckaway and executive vice president at Hays Cos. in Wauwatosa.

The renovation is being funded via $2 million in member programs, gifts and assessments and $1.2 million in debt, Kwiecinski said. Tuckaway, which completed about $1 million in renovations to the patio, pool and tennis facilities and clubhouse from 2013 to 2016, has traditionally financed its renovations using member assessments.

“These loans will be paid off in less than five years,” Kwiecinski said. “We looked at numerous funding mechanisms for this project and this was the best capital structure we could develop in the long-term interest of the membership.”

Tuckaway has engaged Arlington, Texas-based Golfscapes Inc. to create a long-term plan for the course, Kwiecinski said. This first portion, expected to take 18 months, will include the replacement of the irrigation system, the installation of new sand traps with a highly specialized sand and moving the tee boxes back to lengthen the course. The pond will also be expanded, and will impact two holes.

“We expect to have it substantially done by the end of next year,” Kwiecinski said. “What we wanted was a plan for future boards of directors to follow when they look at capital needs each year. Down the road, this includes things such as cart paths throughout the entire course. It includes a renovation of both the main driving range and the short driving range.”

A principal at Golfscapes helped design the original Tuckaway course in 1968, which is part of the reason the firm was chosen for the planning and design, he said.

“We wanted to bring back the spirit of the original design and the spirit of the original course,” Kwiecinski said.

A key aspect of the renovation of the course is the extension of the total length, which is currently around 6,900 yards, to more than 7,000 yards. This change will help the course become competitive again for high-level amateur and professional golf tournaments, which are often seeking courses of 7,000 yards or longer, he said.

Tuckaway has in the past hosted professional tournaments. It held the PGA Tour’s Greater Milwaukee Open from 1973 to 1993.

“We absolutely think we’re going to have the finest golf course in the Milwaukee area once this is done,” Kwiecinski said. “Our club would consider professional (tournament) opportunities down the road. When this expansion is complete.”

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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