September 14, 1999
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
The Cardinal Club, a members-only gathering place for University of Louisville fans, alumni and supporters, today announced a formal groundbreaking date of Wednesday, September 22. An invitation-only ceremony will be held that afternoon at the future site of the club located on US-60 (Shelbyville Rd.) in Simpsonville, Kentucky. Clearing of the roughly 300 acres of land will begin immediately in hopes of opening the club in either fall 2000 or early spring 2001.
The Cardinal Club will include an 18-hole championship golf course, tennis and swimming facilities, and a university-themed clubhouse. The Cardinal Club will provide a portion of membership initiation fees and dues to the university to fund scholarships. The course will also house the University of Louisville golf teams.
University Clubs of America (UCA), a South Carolina-based company which has built similar facilities at the University of South Carolina and Auburn University, entered into a license agreement with the University of Louisville in November 1998. UCA has similar agreements with the University of Alabama, University of Tennessee and University of Kentucky. The University of Nebraska and the University of Houston have signed letters of intent with UCA.
Dr. Tara Singer, Vice President of Alumni Relations, said "The University of Louisville is very excited about the ground-breaking for the Cardinal Club. We look forward to having another home for the friends and fans of the university to gather."
Memberships, which are open to annual contributions to the university, have been selling well since an early February tee-off party held at the University Club and Alumni Center on the Belknap Campus. Director of Sales Kim Wade reports that the Cardinal Club has secured nearly 150 membership commitments across 12 different membership levels.
"There's a lot of excitement surrounding the Cardinal Club," said Director of Athletics Tom Jurich. "It will be a tremendous asset to our university and community and will serve as a beautiful home for our men's and women's golf programs as we work to elevate them to national contenders. I appreciate all the behind-the-scenes hard work that has helped make this wonderful venture a reality."
"This will be a tremendous playing field for the Cardinal golf programs by placing us within national prominence among the NCAA golf arena," states first-year men's head golf coach Mark Crabtree. "The impact this facility will have on recruiting is incredible. It will allow us to talk to the best players in the country." One of the assets of the Cardinal Club is a 20 to 25 acre practice facility. This facility will be divided into separate areas for members and the golf teams. "This will be a facility our team members can utilize to improve their games and know that this is their home away from home," states Kelly Meyers, first-year head women's golf coach.
In July 1999, the city of Simpsonville approved a re-zoning of the former 300-acre farmland that extends from US 60 to Veechdale Road and Interstate 64. Plans were then unveiled for a residential development along the eastern perimeter of the property. Tom Perdew, developer of Hickory Hills Estates, plans to build single family homes on individual lots ranging in size from 1/3 to 3/4 acre. The Founding members of the Cardinal Club receive property and a discounted rate on lot sales within Hickory Hills Estates. UCA partners E. Linwood Johnson and Paul V. Degenhart are also partners within the Hickory Hills Estates project.
Golf course architect Spencer Holt, a 10-year protégé of Arthur Hills, says that the development will impact only one side of the five fairways. "The golf course routing was given top priority in an effort to best utilize the land and to provide a spacious buffer between the golf course and the proposed residential areas," he said. The course is projected to rank among the top five in Kentucky and the university hopes to lure conference and national championships. A Director of Golf has yet to be named or selected.
There are 12 membership levels in the private club covering a broad range of privileges and costs. Anyone who agrees to contribute $250 annually to U of L is eligible to join by contacting the Cardinal Club, 2791 S. Floyd Street in Louisville, or by calling (502) 634-4653 or 1-877-UOL-CLUB. The club's website address is www.uoflcardinalclub.com.