The idea for a second golf course was floated earlier this year by Chet Gladchuk, the academy’s athletic director. His plan quickly met with concerted opposition from hikers, birdwatchers and others who want to preserve the roughly 280 acres as it is.
Proposed new golf course to serve US Naval Academy sparks outcry
Gladchuk, who also heads the Naval Academy Golf Association (NAGA), has asked the Navy to explore the idea of allowing the non-profit organization to lease the land and develop a second 18-hole golf course. to complement the existing private course where college aspirants, free golf intramural and fitness programs. Playing fees and membership dues are greatly reduced for military personnel compared to those charged to members of the public. There is a waiting list to register.
Opponents, including more than two dozen environmental groups, have called on the Navy to kill the idea, saying another golf course would pollute the Chesapeake Bay at a time when efforts to improve water quality of the bay fail. They also argue that the proposal would destroy bird and wildlife habitat and further reduce public access to water.
“I understand and share their concern, as Greenbury Point is a community-loved site for its passive nature, rich history and extraordinary views of the Severn River and Chesapeake Bay,” Pittman’s letter reads.
His letter proposes that the county lease Greenbury Point and manage its conservation area as a park by improving grasslands, removing invasive species, planting native trees and seeding the shoreline with erosion-reducing grasses.
Pittman said the county would also be willing to commit funds to expand nature trails and create features that would provide people with more recreational opportunities along the shoreline, such as designated fishing areas, scenic lookouts, and more. observation and a “paddle-in” park. The county could also provide additional parking space and a ranger substation. Pittman’s letter says the fiscal year 2023 budget has funds that would pay for concept plans and start the process of inviting public participation in planning.
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“We propose to preserve and enhance its current conservation uses, rather than create new ones,” Pittman says in the letter to Captain Homer R. Denius, commanding officer of Naval Support Activity Annapolis (NSSA). The command, part of the Naval District of Washington, supports the academy and several operations on the peninsula, including a nearby rifle and pistol range.
Ed Zeigler, spokesman for the Naval District of Washington, said Wednesday night that Navy officials had not had time to review the letter and would not be able to comment on the county’s proposal.