Dusenberry Designs to renovate Keney Park Golf Course

Dusenberry Designs to renovate Keney Park Golf Course
By Sean Dudley

Keney Park Golf Course in Harford, Connecticut, is to undergo a renovation project led by the Dusenberry Design firm.

Formerly an associate at Greg Norman’s design firm, Matthew Dusenberry will lead the project working alongside Tad Burnett, a former colleague at Norman’s firm and a regular collaborator, most recently at the Palm Beach Gardens Golf Course in Florida.

First opened in 1927, Keney Park’s front nine was designed by Devereux Emmet and Alfred M. Tull, and opened in 1927. The back nine opened three years later and was designed by local engineer Robert ‘Jack’ Ross.

The Keney Park course is a par-70, and plays 6,014 yards, though Dusenberry suggested to Pioppi he will look to lengthen the landlocked course where possible.

“The schedule for the project is quite quick,” said Dusenberry speaking to GCA. “We are looking to complete the planning/permitting by April of 2014 and will be directed by the City of Hartford in that process. Substantial completion of construction work will take place in the summer and autumn of 2014. The goal is to reopen at least a portion of the golf course in the spring of 2015 with the remainder opening as weather and grow-in allows.”

Dusenberry Designs’ approach and preliminary design concept will be to preserve the existing land forms and ground contours, while respecting the design intent and routing of the original Devereux Emmet design. Emphasis will be placed on a limited amount of disturbance,and Matthew Dusenberry sees this a typical tees/greens/bunkers renovation with upgrades to infrastructure such as irrigation and drainage.

Plans also include the lengthening of the course ‘to reflect advances in modern play and equipment’ according to Dusenberry.

“Some of the challenges of the project will be the short construction and grow-in schedule and also dealing with the floodplain and any identified wetlands in a sensitive manner,” said Dusenberry.“Again, the idea is to limit those impacts for sensitivity to the environment and permitting/schedule reasons.”

Minimal changes have been made to the course since the introduction of the back nine, and the city of Harford has set aside US$10 million for the project.

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