Residents riled by rumor of permanent fence around course
The temporary fence is going up around Muirfield Village Golf Club for the Memorial Tournament, but a concern for residents is a permanent fence.
A "Keep Muirfield Beautiful" Facebook page and petition on Change.org have popped up in response to potential plans to erect a permanent security fence on the perimeter of Muirfield Golf Course.
Muirfield residents say golf course management officials at a recent home owners association meeting made mention of a black security fence that could be erected around the golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus.
"The potential of taking a beautiful neighborhood and putting miles of black rail in the middle is ridiculous," said resident Mike Bickley, who created the Facebook page and online petition opposing the idea.
"There is no security issue," Bickley said. They put up fences for tournaments, but we all get along fine."
The issue drew about 175 people to the meeting, Bickley said.
"They were all there to talk about the same thing," he said.
Tim Sprouse, Muirfield Golf Club's media director, said the company has no comment about the matter.
Dublin Director of Community Relations Sandra Puskarcik said no plans for a fence have been submitted to the city, but Nicholas LaRocca, general manager of Muirfield Village Golf Club, requested information about how to get approval for a fence, location and materials.
"LaRocca stated that (Muirfield Village Golf Club) completed an internal study regarding the fence and it is desired for several reasons including PGA TOUR requests, security concerns and certain trespassing and vandalism issues," information from the city said.
Muirfield lies within a planned unit development and would need approval of an amended final development plan from the Planning and Zoning Commission before course officials could erect a fence, information from the city said.
Although no formal plans were submitted to Dublin as of press time, residents said they are still concerned.
So far, more than 500 people have signed the "Dublin City Council: Stop the Muirfield Permanent Security Fencing Plan" petition on Change.org.
On the petition website, residents talk about concerns the fence would violate the openness of the golf course and beauty of the area. Residents also questioned the need for a security fence.
After looking at options to oppose the possible fence, Bickley is encouraging Muirfield residents to contact Dublin City Council members regarding the matter.
"We don't have a lot of legal recourse," he said.