From the Ahwatukee Foothills News – tap here to see article in original publication

While the new owners of the Club West golf course plan for the site’s future, they also are attacking months of accumulated debris.

The Edge and its related consulting firm, Community Land Solutions, launched a full clean-up earlier this month that is still ongoing.

“The entire golf course will be mowed for weeds in the following weeks,” said Edge partner Matt Shearer. “The area around the clubhouse, including the parking lot and hillsides, will be cleaned of weeds and trash. The cart paths will be cleared of all overhanging limbs and debris.

“Removal of dead trees and bushes will also begin shortly, the majority of which will be chipped and spread as mulch,” he added.

Shearer said weather, vandals and the way it had been “cleaned” before his group took over all contributed to the shabbiness of the site.

While having had no regular irrigation for two years has been the primary culprit, those other factors didn’t help.

“We had a lot of rain within the last year,” he said. “We haven’t had any in the last couple of months, but it was in rough shape – and it’s not just what you see. There are a lot of issues out there.”

Three or four landscape maintenance workers, accompanied by a 40-foot dumpster, have been working 1-6 p.m. Monday through Friday on the course, he said.

Moreover, the way “clean-up” had been conducted in recent months, it was more just a matter of shoving the debris around.

“We learned that you can’t just pile it all into the same thing range,” said Shearer. “A lot of times we had to clear. We had to start by cleaning up a lot of the cleanup that was essentially left around the corner over the years.”

This time around, the crew’s supervisor is working with a city inspector for guidance in how to properly clean up the land, he added.

“All six structures on the property have significant damage due to neglect, age, exposure to the elements and repeated vandalism,” Shearer said. 

“To date we have mitigated issues with collapsed roofs, collapsed ceilings, rusted and toppled pumps and generators, destroyed and water damaged interiors, abundant trash, graffiti, and drug paraphernalia – to name a few,” he said.

“Every window has been broken. The damage was shocking and well beyond our initial assessment last fall. The extent of the vandalism and persistence of trespassers has required that all doors to be welded shut.”

The clubhouse had been victimized numerous times by vandals – who also had started a series of fires on the course a few months ago. All the windows were broken and extensive damage had been done to the rooms themselves.

Shearer said the Club West community “deserves much better than the eye sore the land has become over the past four years.”

He called the cleanup not only an effort to “breathe new life into the dead property” but also “the first step in the restoring and revitalizing what was once a jewel of the community.”