Deadline for Heights golf course purchase extended

By ZEINAB NAJM
Times-Herald Newspapers

HEIGHTS — The Wayne County Commission extended the purchase deadline for the Warren Valley Golf Course to Oct. 30 allowing for additional time to work out details, Mayor Daniel Paletko said.

The details include environmental issues, underground tanks tightening and operator agreement which “are taking more time, but should not impact if the transition moving forward,” Dearborn Heights Corporation Counsel Gary Miotke said.

The original agreement said due diligence by the city was originally scheduled to be completed by Sept. 30.

Following the competition of all investigation and due diligence, a presentation on the environmental, survey, financial and legal aspects will be held on Oct. 16.

Paletko said he reviewed financials provided by the county with the current operator and expects at least $90,000 to $100,000 annually in revenue from the golf course and banquet hall.

“The current operator said he is interested in turning the banquet hall into a full-time restaurant, add more outdoor activities and upgrade the banquet center,” Paletko said.

The current operator at Warren Valley has a five-year contract to mange the golf course with the county. He is also in charge of managing Inkster Valley Golf Club, but the employees and equipment are not shared.

The council asked about the ability to hire a new management company and Miotke said that could be an item reviewed after the purchase agreement is passed.

Councilwoman Lisa Hicks-Clayton asked about adding conservation easement to protect the golf course from development, which Miotke said could be protected by the council with ordinance following a purchase agreement.

A motion was made by Councilwoman Marge Horvath to receive, note and file the update report from Paletko on the golf course and banquet center.

“Based on the information I have to date, I would expect to recommend the city of Dearborn Heights to purchase the Warren Valley golf course and banquet center for the price of $1.8 million,” Paletko said. “I think it’s a great deal.”

Under the agreement, the city will pay $1.8 million for 34 of the 36 holes on the 250-acre golf course. There is a 10-year leasing option for the other two holes at the cost of $1.

In March, the city stepped in to purchase the golf course and banquet hall after Delta Management Co. was interested in building a 100- to 200-unit gated community.

Paletko then asked to meet with Wayne County Executive Warren Evans and his representatives in order to begin negotiations to purchase the golf course from the county.

The 255-acre Warren Valley Golf Course, 26116 W. Warren, was designed by Scottish golf architect Donald Ross in 1922 and features two 18-hole courses. It also includes a clubhouse with a pro shop, the Ross Room Bar & Grille and a full banquet center for hosting events.

(Zeinab Najm can be reached at zeinabnajm92@gmail.com.)