Construction work is nearly complete on the redesigned practice facilities at Rockland Country Club in Sparkill, New York, overseen by golf course architect A. John Harvey.
“The genesis of the project was to create an indoor teaching building that was integrated into an overall practice facility renovation program,” says Harvey. “The plan called for a redesign, upgrade and expansion of the club’s range tees and field along with the construction of an enhanced short game practice area.”
The club’s course lies to the west of Route 9W, with the practice area located on the other side of the road, on land leased from the New York State Parks Commission. In June 2018, Harvey walked the area with Rockland’s golf course superintendent Matt Ceplo and head golf professional Bobby Everett, to discuss the possibility of incorporating a proposed teaching building.
“The siting of the building was already determined to be an addition to an existing storage building,” said Harvey. “This directed, to a large extent, how the planning for practice area renovations could coexist and complement compatible uses considering function, aesthetics and safety.”
Several thousand cubic yards of fill material was imported to the work area in preparation for starting the project in March 2019.
Turco Golf handled construction work with shaping done by John Ponko. All turfing has been completed, with the remaining task to install Betty Billy Bunker liner and add of sand into bunkers.
Harvey has consulted at Rockland for over 20 years. “The highlight of the project for me has been to work cooperatively with a long-standing client to create a unified and diverse practice facility, which provides essential teaching, learning and practice features that simulates on-course conditions,” he said.
Ceplo said: “Members may not always have the time to play nine or 18 holes but having a well-designed practice experience allows members to carve out quality practice time given their busy schedules. These facilities will also benefit the club's junior golf programs.”
Harvey has also prepared a bunker renovation master plan for the club, with work on the course to start in autumn.