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November 19, 2013 at 12:18 PM

U.S. Open to cram hotels, crowd roads here in 2015

A golfer looks out toward Puget Sound from Chambers Bay Golf Course in Pierce County, site of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship. (photo by Ken Lambert / The Seattle Times)

A golfer looks out toward Puget Sound from Chambers Bay Golf Course in Pierce County, site of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship. (photo by Ken Lambert / The Seattle Times)

Got a wedding to plan, with tons of relatives from out of town? Your turn to host the company convention in Seattle? You might want to avoid mid-June 2015. Or get your hotel reservations in now.

Yes, it’s a year-and-a-half away, but it’s not too soon for this heads up: The huge sucking sound you hear is the U.S. Open golf tournament booking hotel rooms around Puget Sound.

In case you weren’t paying attention, golf’s biggest game is coming to the Pacific Northwest for the first time, to be played on the Chambers Bay Golf Course in University Place, Pierce County, on June 15-21, 2015.

And while the sponsoring U.S. Golf Association has already been booking up hotels from Tacoma to Gig Harbor for its own entourage, according to Danny Sink, director for the 2015 championship, that just pushes northward — toward SeaTac, Seattle and Bellevue — the pressure on hotel rooms for the tournament’s expected 235,000 attendees.

While Pierce County will be the epicenter, “It will truly be a regional tourism impact,” he said.

Sink and other USGA officials visited The Seattle Times on Tuesday morning to brief editors on what’s coming.

How will they get all those visitors to the course, which is normally accessed only by low-capacity streets? Maybe by train.

Sink said USGA has been working with BNSF Railway and Amtrak to arrange for a special train from Seattle directly to the golf course, which borders the main north-south tracks used by Amtrak. Sink is optimistic about a proposed special, temporary station at the golf course. “Those meetings started the minute we got here,” said Sink, who moved to the area last year. “We’ve got a great resource right beside Chambers Bay.”

 

Comments | More in Northwest, Tourism industry, Washington state | Topics: 2015 U.S. Open championship, Chambers Bay Golf Course, Seattle U.S. Open

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