Just what activities GVR’s newly acquired Canoa Hills Golf Course clubhouse will house remains to be seen, but a process to help determine that and "domino effects" to other facilities is underway to give members and clubs weigh-in opportunity.
Preceded by years of discussion and talk of prior promises by decision-makers – none of which were made in writing and as such were always fluid — a member forum Wednesday drew about 75 attendees, several who continued making their case.
The two-story, 8,070-square-foot building was purchased in October 2020; GVR had been eyeing it for several possibilities following the demise of the golf course it once served. The organization’s growing clubs have been begging for dedicated space, where availability wouldn’t be restricted to a couple days weekly, there’d be less need to haul equipment in and out of storage, and artists could work in an environment designed for their use without long lines to get in.
Right off, glass arts and ceramics clubs saw the clubhouse’s serious potential for meeting their needs, including dust control, storage, dedicated cleaning room, workspace for more than just a few people at a time, and kilns.
At Wednesday’s forum, one ceramics club member pointed to current space so tight there is no way could she do ceramics or glass work from a wheelchair or even get a walker between work tables. She wants a space that meets OSHA requirements. A glass arts club speaker referenced a building the size of a two-car garage with a leaky roof.
About a dozen who spoke Wednesday are leaders or members of clubs whose activities pertain to glass arts and ceramics; a few other speakers postulated about space that may become available in facilities vacated by potential moves.
Others don’t like that they can’t enjoy club activities as often as they want due to membership growth and high-season crowds; two compared GVR’s arts/crafts facilities to Quail Creek’s in Sahuarita, citing one acquaintance who actually moved there and others considering it. One from the lapidary and silversmith club bemoaned the worn-out space and electrical work apparent in that club’s space.
Many hold fast to the belief these clubs were shoo-ins for the 36-year-old clubhouse, despite extensive refurbishing needed for any use, and there has been ongoing informal discussion with GVR leadership for what club members came to see as a sure bet, as they put effort into drafting tentative plans.
“I think it would be a money-saving thing down the road to have an creative/industrial complex,” taking into consideration OSHA protections, a pouring lift for molds, which can weigh 50 to 150 pounds, and more, one ceramics club enthusiast said.
Of any previous plans there may have been for the clubhouse building, Planning and Evaluation Committee Chair Ted Boyett said as with any plans, if GVR goes forward, “it’s important that we take pause to get second a opinion,” and member input is appreciated.