Mundelein Dist. 120 considering selling most of Village Green property
If you want to get in a round of golf at the Village Green Country Club in Mundelein, you should grab your clubs and head over there soon -- because it may not be around much longer.
Officials with Mundelein High School District 120, which has owned the course for more than a decade, may vote April 18 to put most of the 91-acre site up for sale.
They expect a homebuilder will buy the land, which is on the southeast corner of Midlothian and Winchester roads, and redevelop the site. They're confident the land will sell.
"There's been enough expressed interest that we should be able to do something with it," District 120 board member Tami Forman said.
The district likely will keep 40 acres of the Village Green land for athletic fields. The lacrosse, softball and soccer teams could get their own fields, Forman said, and a cross-country course could be created.
Unfortunately for golfers who play at Village Green, which opened in 1962, the plans will doom the course.
That's sad news for Vernon Hills resident Julie Simpson, who said she golfs at Village Green a few times a year.
"It's affordable and open when most other courses are closed," she said. "If there is a warm enough day to play in the winter and there's no snow, I know I have somewhere to play."
Village Green is a short drive from the Mundelein High campus at 1350 W. Hawley St.
The school board voted to buy the golf course for $8.4 million in 2004. Enrollment was projected to rise, and officials thought more land might be needed for a second campus or additional athletic fields.
But the student population didn't increase as predicted and has since leveled off at about 2,000 students annually.
"The enrollment is projected to remain in the 2,000 range for the next five years," Mundelein High spokesman Ron Girard said.
As such, the course never was redeveloped and golfers have been able to continue playing there.
Village Green has been operated since 2007 by a company called GolfVisions Management, which also runs courses in Gurnee, Waukegan, Cary and other towns. GolfVisions pays the school district 5 percent of the course's gross revenue, with a minimum payment of $50,000 annually.
The district's agreement with GolfVisions expires in 2020, but it may be terminated with 60 days' notice.
Mundelein High officials have been talking about unloading the property for more than two years. In November 2014, the school board decided to begin investigating a possible sale.
Girard said trustees and administrators don't have a specific target price range at this point.
Forman said she hopes a sale will generate at least enough cash to pay off the remaining balance on the loans the district used to buy the land. That comes to about $3.6 million, officials said.
She's also optimistic there'll be money to fund the proposed athletic fields.
Reconfiguring some of the property as a nine-hole golf course isn't an option, Forman said.
"I don't believe that has crossed anybody's mind," she said.