A new golf course – designed by Pete Dye before his death in 2020 – will open this summer at the 600-acre Holliday Farms development in Zionsville, Indiana.
“The Holliday family had engaged Pete Dye and his wife Alice over 20 years ago to design a layout on the property,” said developer Steve Henke. “They were both very familiar with the site, Alice grew up spending summers there and Pete had removed some trees in the 1990s for another Indianapolis golf course he was working on at the time.”
The design team, which also included PB Dye and Tim Liddy, created an 18-hole course with five sets of tees, giving a total range of 5,077 to 7,321 yards. Each nine has two par threes, five par fours and two par fives.
“With this neat history, Pete and Alice’s familiarity with the land, and having worked with them in the past at Bridgewater and Chatham Hills, we were excited to work with them at Holliday Farms,” said Henke. “Pete and Alice had an amazing vision for capturing all the unique characteristics of the land and incorporating them into this beautiful design.”
The golf course site includes rolling hills, woods, creeks and lakes, and is located near to downtown Zionsville. According to Henke, 80 per cent of the property’s original trees will remain and the development firm has committed to planting another 25,000 trees.
“We were excited to work with Mary Rogers and her husband Randy to preserve the vision Mr Holliday always had for the property: an amazing golf course of over 7,300 yards and a quality development preserving the history of the ground,” said Henke. “Mary is the daughter of the late John Holliday and a cousin to Alice Dye.”
The round begins with a par 4-4-5 stretch, with trouble located on the right of each hole, in the form of fairway bunkers, a pond and, at the 610-yard third, a creek.
The developer describes the creeks that feature throughout the round as “Augusta-style”, grassed to the water’s edge.
“The fourth is the first of four wonderful par threes,” said Henke. “It is framed by trees, has a gradual fall from tee to green, a moseying creek that provides a soothing and relaxing setting and in general, beauty that is difficult to match. When you step up to the tee on this par three, the first thing that will come to mind is ‘whew, this is gorgeous’. The green has a spine that runs through the middle of the putting surface and creates an elevation change from front to back.”
As a tribute to the Dyes, the course features railroad ties on the walk to the first tee, as well as at the par-four fourteenth and approach to the par-five fifth, which is also home to 25 of the course’s 200 bunkers.
“One of our favourite locations is to sit above the sixteenth hole, a short par five that begins with an elevated tee shot overlooking Eagle Creek,” said Henke. “Lined with trees as well, it’s especially beautiful in the fall with the change of colour to the leaves and having the creek in the background.”
The 18-hole course will be complemented by practice facilities and an executive nine-hole course, which will sit in a valley below the clubhouse. Its nine par three holes will wrap around the driving range. The practice area also features a 9,000-square-foot putting green and a 7,000-square-foot chipping green with bunkers.
Along with the Dye course, the Henke Development Group is also developing the former farmland site into a luxury community with the potential for 450 home sites, which could take between 8-10 years. Housing lots began being staked in February 2019 while Wadsworth Golf Construction began work on the golf course in 2020.