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High-tech golf driving range eyes Goochland for 3-story, $25M site

GOOCHLAND, Va. — A publicly traded company bent on growing a national chain of high-tech golf driving ranges is eyeing the Richmond market for its second site.

Drive Shack, a New York-based firm that owns dozens of golf courses nationwide and is developing a brand golf and entertainment venues similar to fast-growing Topgolf, is planning a three-story, 60,000-square-foot interactive driving range in Goochland County.

The facility, which the company estimates will cost upwards of $25 million, would take shape on a 13-acre site that abuts Route 288 just north of West Broad Street, according to documents submitted to the county.

The company describes its facilities as having “85+ indoor/outdoor hitting bay suites that offer multiplayer competitive games that both non-golfers and golfers can enjoy.”

The plot is part of a 121-acre assemblage owned by the Pruitt family, a major landowner in that stretch of Goochland and Henrico County. It’s unclear whether Drive Shack will buy or lease the land.

The company seeks to rezone its portion of the land to permit a “golf-themed entertainment and restaurant venue,” according to letter sent out to neighbors announcing a pre-planning community meeting on April 20 at 6:30 p.m. at Centerville Volunteer Fire & Rescue, at 52 Broad Street Road in Manakin-Sabot.

The letter by attorney Andy Condlin of Roth Jackson, who is handling the rezoning request for Drive Shack, says the facility will include a central restaurant, a shop, lounges, a gaming room, rentable event space and an outdoor terrace on the upper level.

“We hope to file in May 2017 and subject to comments and feedback, hope to have rezoning approval from the Board of Supervisors by July 2017,” Condlin said. “Plan approval and necessary permitting will be completed soon after followed by a nine- to 11-month construction schedule.”

Drive Shack investor presentations say the sites are expected to cost $15 million to $25 million to build, and to generate $3 million to $6 million in earnings within three to five years.

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