Oxmoor Valley, Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail
Oxmoor Valley The 54-hole Oxmoor Valley golf complex, just southwest of Birmingham, Jefferson County, was the first Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail site to open (May 1992). It was developed by the Retirement Systems of Alabama (RSA) and is operated by SunBelt Golf. The complex is located in Oxmoor Valley between Red Mountain and Shades Mountain on 650 acres.
The Oxmoor Valley facility has two championship 18-hole golf courses, Ridge Course and Valley Course, and an 18-hole par-3 Short Course. The Ridge Course is hilly and undulating with some steep terrain and many downhill shots and expansive vistas. The Valley Course winds between the mountains along creeks, lakes, and tree-lined hillsides. It has shots over ravines with landing areas and rolling fairways. The Short Course is hilly and most of the holes play downhill. There is a 35,000-square-foot clubhouse with cart storage, locker rooms, dining room, bar, indoor grill, meeting rooms, and wrap-around veranda. The practice range includes a separate teaching academy.
Oxmoor Valley Golf Complex In 1989, legislators and business leaders in Jefferson County approached David G. Bronner, Chief Executive Officer of RSA, about RSA financing a major golf course near Birmingham. At the time, U.S. Steel was planning to develop some of the 8,000 acres of former mining land it owned into a golf course with residential, commercial, and industrial properties. Bronner considered this effort compatible with RSA’s policy of investing in Alabama and proposed a 54-hole golf complex that would be the first in a series of public golf complexes across Alabama that would be a major attraction for tourists and retirees. RSA agreed to fund the construction and operation of this initial golf complex, U.S. Steel donated 650 acres, and the city of Birmingham and Jefferson County provided access roads and utilities to the complex.
Oxmoor Valley golf complex spurred development in the area, with some 600 residential houses and commercial and industrial properties constructed. The spending by visitors and new residents has provided a substantial amount of tax revenue and jobs for the state and local economy. The success of this project led to a partnership by RSA and SunBelt Golf Corporation, U.S. Steel, the Daniel Corporation, and the city of Hoover in Jefferson and Shelby Counties for developing another 18-hole golf course, hotel, spa, and conference center, and additional housing at the nearby Renaissance Birmingham Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa in 2005.
Fagan, Mark. The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail: Its History and Economic Impact. Montgomery, Ala.: NewSouth Books, 2016.