Finnish landfill course underway


Finnish landfill course underway
Sean Dudley

Construction has begun at the new Tapiola Golf Club in Espoo, just outside the Finnish capital of Helsinki. The course, which is being built on a former landfill, has been in planning for almost ten years.

American golf architect Tim Nugent is designing the course, and, unusually, will be handling shaping duties personally. “The site is compact and has resulted in a core course of around 6,660 yards,” he told GCA. “It will have lots of shorter holes that fly in the face of current ‘design for the ball’ thinking.”

The course design has been through several iterations. “The area behind the twelfth green was found to contain a falcon’s nest, so holes 11-13 had to be redesigned to buffer it,” said Nugent. 

Around 100 hectares of landfill are being converted to green areas, with around 55 hectares of that being occupied by the golf course. “I hope Tapiola will be a good example of the direction new courses should be headed – fun and playable for everyone but with just enough to keep good golfers interested,” Nugent said.