Soldotna opts not to buy Birch Ridge Golf Course

The Soldotna City Council on Wednesday turned down the possibility of purchasing the Birch Ridge Golf Course, ending a community-wide discussion that began in October.

The resolution instructing City Manager Mark Dixson to negotiate an agreement for the purchase of the Birch Ridge Golf Course land and water rights failed 4 to 2, with Linda Murphy and Pete Sprague voting in favor. 

Once again the subject of the potential purchase filled the council meeting room, which was cleared out within moments of the resolution failing.

“Just because this has been voted down doesn’t mean we’re not willing to work with you (the Cowans) and see if there isn’t a solution out there that we haven’t looked at,” said Dixson, facing Pat Cowan and a few supporters who remained until the end of the meeting.

Paul Whitney, who voted against the resolution, said it was a tough decision for him as part of organizations that supported the resolution, and knowing members in the audience.

Murphy, who had introduced the resolution, said she felt the failed resolution would be the death knell for the golf course, and the council had passed up a chance simply to see what negotiation and terms were even possible.

The council also unanimously passed a resolution approving a contract with the Peninsula Construction Inc. for the Binkley Street road rehabilitation construction project for the amount for $3,447,235.14. 

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