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Jack Nicklaus public golf course project moves forward

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Posted at 2:53 PM, Jan 05, 2021

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Work has begun on Phase 1 of the first of two Jack Nicklaus Signature Design public golf courses planned for Buffalo.

“We begin to heal this parcel which, before Buffalo's steel age, was a bucolic setting in a lovely neighborhood. And we declare that Buffalo is preparing for the day when we emerge from a conquered virus, and return to the work of strengthening our future,” said Project Chairman, Kevin Gaughan.

Nicklaus designers will determine the amount of additional soil and parcel "shaping" required to prepare the Hopkins Street site for a Jack Nicklaus' Signature design. Construction on that course is scheduled to begin in May of 2021. Design renderings should be available in four to six weeks.

Nicklaus also plans to redesign the Delaware Park Golf Course. He toured the property in 2018.

The total price tag for both courses and the education center is estimated at $23 million down from its original cost of $42 million. Gaughan said architects reduced their fees for the education center portion of the project. He said Nicklaus is also doing the design work for less than his original fee.

Gaughan said they've raised at least $10 million for the first phase of the project which includes design and construction of the South Buffalo golf course. However, he wouldn't disclose the total private dollars raised so far.

Gaughan also announced Valentino Dixon, who served 27 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted of murder, will be the project's official artist. Gaughan has commissioned Mr. Dixon to paint: Buffalo's Frederick Law Olmsted parks and parkways system; the South Buffalo parcel as it exists today; and, when completed, the Jack Nicklaus Signature public golf course. Dixon and Gaughan will collaborate to have Dixon's works exhibited in local galleries.