ST. LOUIS – A family fun favorite, Tower Tee, is making a new and improved comeback thanks to two best friends.
Tower Tee, the popular batting cage and driving range attraction, shut down in July of 2018. It wasn’t until October of that year that Steve Walkenbach approached his friend of 20 years, Mike Shamia, about possibly purchasing the land and redeveloping it into a new Tower Tee.
In May 2019 the duo approached McBride Homes, who had purchased the land and had plans to build a subdivision, and Shamia said they “kindly stepped aside, as they promised to do if somebody had a bonafide offer, and a deal was made to acquire the land.”
Shamia and Walkenbach made a multi-million dollar investment for the land and the total redevelopment. Their investment is giving Tower Tee a huge upgrade.
“We both had memories that we pulled upon of our days here at Tower Tee and sort of used those and concepts from other facilities to come up with what we think is going to be a first-class state of the art facility,” Shamia said.
The owners plan to open the new Tower Tee in spring 2021 complete with a 15,000 square foot putting green, a short game practice area and a 9-hole par 3 golf course.
Other features of the new Tower Tee include a driving range, double-decker driving range, batting cages, mini-golf, Footgolf, bocce ball, playground and patio areas.
The original Tower Tee was an important place to both Shamia, who attended Lindbergh High School, and Walkenbach, who attended Bishop DuBourg High School.
“He came here with his dad, I came here with my dad. This is a special place. We are really looking forward to hosting people out here again and we think people are going to love it,” Shamia said.
The pair has hired a full team to make their vision a reality. Art Schaupeter is the golf course designer, Sellenriek Grading has been hard at work on the greens, FGM Architects will work on the clubhouse and Tarlton Corporation is the general contractor on the project.
Shamia said the greens are being taken care of first and then construction will start on the building side of the project. He expects the green space to be completed before Halloween.
“As the project gets further along and we really start to see our vision become a reality it gets more and more exciting,” Shamia said.