Staples leads Park-inspired renovation at Meadowbrook CC


Staples leads Park-inspired renovation at Meadowbrook CC
Adam Lawrence
By Adam Lawrence

Meadowbrook CC in the Detroit suburb of Northville is celebrating its centenary by breaking ground on a major renovation led by Arizona-based architect Andy Staples.

When founded in 1916, Meadowbrook had a six hole course designed by Scottish legend Willie Park Jr. Over the years, the course has expanded to eighteen holes, and a number of architects, including Donald Ross, have worked on it.

Staples told GCA that he wanted to return Meadowbrook to a look and feel in keeping with its original designer. “I took several of Meadowbrook’s key decision makers on a tour of southern England last year to see some of the key heathland courses, especially those designed by Willie Park,” he said. “We were blown away by the courses we saw, and we decided we wanted to use the influence of Huntercombe and Sunningdale for the final look and feel. So expect some quirky mounding on the final course!”

The architect added that he had hoped to take the heathland influence further still. “Meadowbrook has quite a lot in common with Park’s heathland designs, and I would have loved to use a local plant that resembles heather in rough areas, but we weren’t able to get a good planting scheme. So in its place, we will use tall fescue to get the right sort of vintage, natural look.”

Contractor TDI Golf has just started on site, on a project that will see all the course’s greens, tees and bunkers rebuilt, fairways reseeded, and a number of changes to the routing. “We plan to have greens seeded – with Pure Distinction bentgrass – by 15 August, and all other areas by the first of September,” Staples said. “The course is closed for the year, so we have chance to do some really great work.”