Planes have been known to land on golf courses in an emergency, but that is by no means an ideal situation. Planes do much better traversing flat slabs of an asphalt runway and that’s the reason Piedmont Triad International Airport (PTIA) just closed Pleasant Ridge Golf Course, an 18-hole par-70 public course at 1518 Pleasant Ridge Road.

PTIA is constructing an 800-plus acre aviation megasite to attract economic development, and the land that makes up the course will be part of that site. The airport has owned the 140-acre golf course for years but airport officials had let it remain open since progress on the megasite hadn’t reached the point at which the course had to be shut down.

Part of the megasite project is a “taxiway bridge” over I-73 that connects the golf course land to the airport. The completion of the bridge was the reason behind the course closure.

PTIA Executive Director Kevin Baker said that, until the taxiway bridge was built, the land was “useless” to the airport but, now that the bridge is in place, the land might at any time become an essential spot for a tenant. That meant that the course, which opened in 1969, had to be shut down.

Now, he said, it’s time for work crews to get busy on those greens and fairways.

“We just have a lot to do, a lot of construction,” he said. “This will be the next phase.”

Baker said workers will tear down buildings on the course, rip out the irrigation lines and cart paths, and fill in the ponds and traps.

“We’ll also be getting rid of the trees,” he said. “There really weren’t that many trees out there, so that part is easy.”

According to the website, Pleasant Ridge Golf Course was designed by Lee Evans and Red Brume and it measures 6,432 yards. The course featured 4 sets of tees for different skill levels.

Online reviews about the course were mixed.   Some reviewers stated that the course was very well maintained but others said Pleasant Ridge was expensive considering the quality of the course.