Mother Nature has not cooperated with the makeover of Fort Worth’s historic Rockwood Golf Course.
Too much rain and not enough spring heat mean that the new sod and grass sprigs used on the greens didn’t fully establish in time for the planned opening this fall.
Instead, the City Council is learning Tuesday that they’ll have to wait until July, or eight months more, to reopen the 77-year-old course.
Councilman Sal Espino, whose district includes Rockwood, said he’s disappointed but understands. He said he’s just ready to show off the city’s $5.1 million investment that’s meant to make Rockwood a showcase course.
We want to get it done right. I had hoped we could get it done this fall. But I know it’s going to get done.
Sal Espino, District 2 Fort Worth councilman
“We want to get it done right,” Espino said. “I had hoped we could get it done this fall. But I know it’s going to get done.”
Richard Zavala, the city’s park director, said that the contract for the work was awarded at the right time and that the contractor started at the right time but that the weather is solely to blame. Suppliers couldn’t harvest grass for the project when they should have, and then the heavy rains in June and July made the course too wet to get on it to work, he said.
As a result, the grass on the front nine holes is 85 percent done; the back nine is only 60 percent done. The course is located just north of downtown along Jacksboro Highway.
Zavala said his department thought about opening the front nine to golfers but decided it was best to open the course all at once. If it can be opened sooner than July, it will be, he said.
“We ran the numbers on that,” Zavala said. “We made the decision on the long-term basis: Let’s be ready totally.”
Renovations, paid for with 2014 bond fund and city gas royalties, began in November. The redesigned course will have new greens, tees, fairways, irrigation and drainage systems and golf cart paths.