Golf Course Architecture - Issue 68, April 2022

The global journal of golf design and development I S S U E 68 A P R I L 2 0 2 2

The Art and Science of Golf Course Architecture Anvaya Cove Golf and Sports Club - Hole 13 - Morong, Philippines USA +1-707-526-7190 • • Golfplan

WELCOME 1 ADAM LAWRENCE The biggest recent story in golf has been the proposed LIV Golf International Series professional tour, fronted by Greg Norman and bankrolled by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, to the tune of US$400 million. Norman has revealed the initial schedule of eight events across Europe, America and Asia, starting with a US$25 million event at the Centurion Club outside London, which will be, up to that point, the richest purse ever played for in golf. No players have yet committed to the series and given the bad odour that surrounds Phil Mickelson after his ill-judged comments on the whole affair, it remains to be seen how many will, and how many ‘marquee’ names Norman can get to sign on the dotted line. Part of the Saudi government’s Vision 2030 strategy is to diversify the economy away from petrochemicals, with golf now an important part of the country’s development mix, both in terms of leisure assets in new cities for a growing population, as well as a hoped-for golf tourism offer. The Royal Greens course near Jeddah, which has already hosted events on men’s and women’s tours, opened in 2018. Up to sixteen new courses, including designs by the Norman and Nicklaus firms, are expected to follow before the end of this decade – an ambitious target, but not the sort of eyewatering number that marks unattainable strategies. Saudi Arabia has, to put it mildly, a PR problem; as an absolute monarchy, the state there is used to doing what it wants; as the home of Islam’s most sacred sites, it is understandably protective of its religious heritage and has, in the past, been exceedingly private, basically off-limits to non-Muslim tourists. I have been invited to visit the country on a number of occasions and I have decided that Saudi is, as things stand, a step too far for me, as a journalist (not that I think my life would be at risk if I didn’t like their golf courses). But I have been to, and accepted hospitality from, plenty of countries whose human rights record is not all it should be. I am, and remain, conflicted. The Saudi conundrum

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PEFC Certi ed This product is from sustainably managed forests and controlled sources PEFC/16-33-576 Toby Ingleton Publisher Benedict Pask Publication & Sales Manager Ritwik Bhattacharjee Circulation Stuart Fairbrother Production Manager Subscribe Tudor House, 6 Friar Lane Leicester LE1 5RA Tel: +44 116 222 9900 Published by Tudor Rose Golf Course Architecture is published with the support and guidance of the American Society of Golf Course Architects, the European Institute of Golf Course Architects, and GEO Foundation. 5 ISSN: 1745-3585. Printed in Great Britain by Micropress Printers. © 2022 Tudor Rose Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be stored or transmitted or reproduced in any form or by any means, including whether by photocopying, scanning, downloading onto computer or otherwise without the prior written permission from Tudor Rose Holdings Ltd. Views expressed in Golf Course Architecture are not necessarily those of the publishers. Acceptance of advertisements does not imply official endorsement of the products or services concerned. While every care has been taken to ensure accuracy of content, no responsibility can be taken for any errors and/or omissions. Readers should take appropriate professional advice before acting on any issue raised herein. The publisher reserves the right to accept or reject advertising material and editorial contributions. The publisher assumes no liability for the return of unsolicited art, photography or manuscripts. It is assumed that any images taken from sources which are widely distributed, such as on the Web, are in the public domain. It is recognised though that since such images tend to be passed freely between sources it is not always possible to track the original source. If copyrighted material has ended up being treated as public domain due to the original source not being identified please contact the publisher, Tudor Rose. Adam Lawrence Editor Richard Humphreys News Editor Edwin Roald Contributor Bruce Graham, Libby Sidebotham, Dhanika Vansia Design Chris Jackson Website Development Arnold Palmer Design Company, Arthur Schaupeter Golf Course Architects, Atmospix – Thomas Fitter, Ryan J Birmingham, Jonathan Davison, European Golf Design, Gaunt Golf Design, Getty Images/David Cannon, Caspar Grauballe, iStock, Leo Diaz Design, Gary Lisbon, Kyle Phillips Golf Course Design, Mogens Mikkelsen, Nicklaus Design, Shizuoka Country, Jacob Sjöman, Real Las Palmas, Richardson | Danner Golf Course Architects, Alan Rijks, Edwin Roald, Ross Golf Design, Rumanza Golf Club, Russell Lands, Tilander Golf Design, Viveiro Golf Club, Weston Golf & Country Club, Whitman, Axland & Cutten Photography

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SPONSORS 7 Arnold Palmer Design Company With a storied history of projects in over 37 states and 25 countries, Arnold Palmer Design Company senior architects Thad Layton and Brandon Johnson bring an unparalleled depth of knowledge, expertise and Mr Palmer’s influence to every project. Art Schaupeter Art Schaupeter offers full design services for both newbuilds and renovations of existing courses, working closely with his clients throughout the design and construction process. Atlas Turf International Atlas Turf International provides turf on a global scale as a worldwide distributor of the highest quality turfgrasses for golf courses and sports fields. European Golf Design European Golf Design was established in 1992 and is the golf course design company of the European Tour. Golf Course Architecture By Caspar By Caspar is the design firm of golf architect Caspar Bay Grauballe, whose aim is to help improve the beautiful game of golf by creating and refining exciting and spectacular golf courses. By Caspar aims to develop golf courses with a clear and unique signature – a signature that enables clubs to attract more players. Golfplan David Dale and Kevin Ramsey have designed over 200 courses across the world, providing clients with market-oriented design solutions through an approach that is innovative, user-friendly, and environmentally and financially sustainable. Harradine Golf Donald Harradine founded the family’s golfing practice in 1929. Harradine Golf has designed, remodelled, constructed or supervised construction of 200+ courses in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Many have won awards and some host PGA tournaments. Hunter Industries Hunter Industries manufactures innovative irrigation systems and solutions. Family-owned and based in San Marcos, USA, it offers over 1,000 products including a spectrum of water-efficient solutions for golf, sport turf, commercial, residential and high-end irrigation systems. Kyle Phillips Golf Course Design The Kyle Phillips design philosophy stems from the belief that golf courses should have their own character and personality derived from the site’s existing natural features, as well as its location and history. Pure Seed Pure Seed is the global leader in turfgrass genetics. With award-winning plant breeding, Pure Seed is dedicated to developing the world’s best turf varieties. Rain Bird Since 1933, developing and manufacturing innovative irrigation products has been Rain Bird’s sole focus. Rain Bird Service Team’s sole focus is irrigation and water conservation. We call it The Intelligent Use of Water. Rees Jones, Inc Rees Jones, Inc is internationally recognised for its customised design and construction supervision of new courses for private clubs, resorts, real estate communities and public facilities, as well as renovating, restoring and updating existing courses for everyday play and major championships. Southwest Greens Construction The official construction arm for Southwest Greens International, responsible for all major golf course construction projects. The Southwest Greens product is the preferred putting surface for more than 40 professional golfers on the PGA and LPGA Tours. Sports Turf Solutions Sustainable Turf Farms is a subsidiary company of Sports Turf Solutions and is the largest producer of certified turf grasses in South East Asia. Stirling & Martin Blake Stirling and Marco Martin have successfully designed golf courses for 30 years. With a motto of ‘SM-art Golf ’, the firm provides clients with a complete range of design services, construction supervision and budget control, ensuring high levels of satisfaction. Tee-2-Green For over 50 years, Tee-2-Green has led the field with game-changing bentgrass like Penncross, the A’s and G’s, and Pure bents. We set the standard for quality and purity with groundbreaking varieties bred to improve playability, resist disease and tolerate extreme conditions. Whitman, Axland & Cutten Whitman, Axland & Cutten (WAC Golf) is an international design-build practice with more than 90 years of collective experience specialising in thoughtful, field-driven solutions. Arnold Palmer Design Company G O L F C O U R S E D E S I G N KYLE PHILLIPS

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9 CONTENTS 12 This issue’s Tee Box begins with news of a new Faldo course opening in Pakistan, and includes reports of recent projects from around the globe 38 Icelandic golf course architect Edwin Roald says that some golf facilities may already be carbon positive 40 With players hitting the ball ever-further, Adam Lawrence asks what should be the role of a par five, and what can designers do to challenge the big hitters 48 Twin greens and a fresh design provide options galore at the Shizuoka Country Shimada course on Japan’s south coast 54 Adam Lawrence visits Real Las Palmas to find out how the oldest golf club in Spain is planning to improve its course 58 Coore and Crenshaw’s Wicker Point, the pair’s first design in Alabama, is being built with the aim of bringing top class golf to the state 64 A Texas municipal plans to redesign its short course and practice facilities to cater for the entire town ON THE COVER The par-three third on the Shizuoka Country Shimada course in Japan. Read more on page 48. Photographed by: Shizuoka Country +1 314 443 9029 Arthur Schaupeter GOLF COURSE ARCHITECTS Photo: Russell Kirk Maximizing value for our clients Creating unique adventures for golfers Photo: Devin Sena TPC Colorado ranked #89 on America’s 100 Greatest Public Courses – Golf Digest 2021

11 MA I L BOX Dear Editor I live in Baytown, Texas, and our city leaders have finally heard me and the rest of the golfing community, to return Evergreen Point GC as a golf course. Evergreen closed down six years ago and the city purchased the course, only to help a developer build a custom home neighborhood – which did not come about. They built 30ish tract homes in six years, not exactly a wild success! The city kept the remainder of the course, roughly 105 acres, as a park, with the cart paths as walking/jogging paths, stocked the water hazards as little fishing holes, added a disc golf course and whatever footgolf is. It would be funny if I were not so passionate about the loss of an incredibly nice and challenging golf course. I have petitioned our mayor, City Hall and the City Council for these past six years to renovate this course. The city has been focused for years on building a hotel and convention centre less than a mile from Evergreen Point GC and I was told that we could not talk about golf until they broke ground on this. Now, our city has appointed a developer for what I thought was going to be a traditional golf course. Due to the limitations (land size/ footprint) that the city has imposed, the developer has come back with a ‘compressed’ design, putting their 18-36 holes into a nine-hole footprint, with each hole having five or six tee ‘spots’, not boxes. Have you ever heard of such a gimmicky golf game like this T36 I have described? Is this a laughable joke? I am familiar with more than a few course designs of nine- and 12-hole courses, and parthree courses looking for ways to grow the game of golf and considerations for limited real estate and land. I get it, these make sense, with more people having time for nine or 12 holes or an hour or two to play a par-three course. At 63 years of age I maybe a little too set in my ways, but I do not see this as an answer to anything other than getting into a lawsuit. Chet Theiss Baytown, Texas Chet, thank you for your passionate letter, which demonstrates how important local facilities are to us all. It appears that the developers are proposing nine holes that would be played twice (from different teeing angles and in some cases to different greens) to form an 18-hole round. Hopefully this mitigates safety issues and, while it may not be one of a kind, if implemented with care and expertise, it could bring enjoyment to many. I would prefer to have some form of golf available than none at all. We are delighted to receive letters from readers, and the best in each issue will be rewarded with a golf shirt. Send to 6 Friar Lane, Leicester, LE1 5RA, UK, or email us at Sandy was in his happy place last time out, on the first tee of the historic Lundin Links course in Fife, Scotland. Though the club was founded in 1868, golf has been played on those links for much longer: Lundin and the adjacent Leven course were originally one, but the increasing popularity of golf forced the two to separate, and some additional holes to be constructed to give both clubs eighteen holes. It was a local who was first out of the hat, so congratulations to Martin Bonnar of nearby Ladybank GC. A prized GCA shirt is on the way. This month, Sandy is quite a long way away from Scotland! And if Lundin/Leven is one of the first few places where golf was played, this venue is famous for being the last place where something happened. No more clues! Answers, as ever, by email to GOPHER WATCH


13 Rumanza Golf Club in Multan, Pakistan, has opened its new Sir Nick Faldo Signature course. The club, part of a new 9,000-acre community being developed by the Defence Housing Authority of Multan, also has a six-hole parthree layout and a practice range. “The course should challenge the top players from the back tees but be eminently playable for all other standards of golfer from the other tees,” said Andy Haggar, lead architect at Faldo Design. “The fairways are quite generous to help golfers keep the ball in play, whilst at the same time, the shaping and placement of the hazards challenge the better players to put the ball in the right place. “Often the strategy of the hole is created with the green’s design as the starting point. Here, each green features a range of pin placements that will be either hard, medium or easy. There is noticeable movement in the greens, but the surface areas are large enough to accommodate that movement. As with the fairways, it is about being in the right place on the green to give yourself the best chance of a good score.” The layout, which is over 7,500 yards from the back tees, takes golfers through three distinct areas, with the first four holes characterised by desert, holes five to twelve among trees, and the remainder traversing around a water storage lake to the clubhouse at the centre of the course. “On the playing side at Rumanza, we wanted to create an interesting, strategic and memorable golfing experience,” said Haggar. “Once we had scraped off the top surface of material on this very f lat site, we found pure sand. That moved us towards creating something of an inland links-style golf course. New Faldo course opens in Pakistan Photo: Rumanza Golf Club Rumanza layout takes golfers through three distinct areas, characterised by desert, trees and water

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15 “The closing three holes are spectacular. They play around a large lake that features a peninsula, where we have retained mango trees. Also, because of the peninsula, it will mean that the extent of the lake is only revealed as you play the holes around it. This means you won’t see the lake alongside the par-four eighteenth until you walk off the par-three seventeenth green and stand on the final tee. It is certainly impressive and memorable.” Haggar says that alongside some links-like shaping, revetted bunkers were the obvious choice. “Bunkers are revetted in a traditional style using EcoBunker, with turf rolled down over the edge,” he said. “We also used EcoBunker to create a revetted edge to certain sections of the waste areas adjacent to the fairways, which provides another nice feature of the course, and which complements the bunkering.” When selecting turfgrass for the Rumanza course, sustainability and performance were primary considerations. The conditions called for a durable warm season turfgrass able to thrive in extreme temperatures and conducive to the pure sand base. To meet these demands, the architect team at Faldo Design specified a turfgrass with which they were familiar from previous projects, Platinum TE paspalum, supplied by Atlas Turf International. Rumanza features Platinum TE throughout the course from tee to green. As a versatile cultivar, Platinum TE is adaptable to various heights of cut and can be mowed as low as 2.03 millimetres for tight and fast greens or grown to higher heights for fairways and rough. “Rumanza has successfully opened to the public with rave reviews from the Pakistani golfers for the overall facility – including the Platinum paspalum,” said general manager Sam Clayton. “The highest praise came from Sir Nick Faldo, Graeme McDowell, Rafa Cabrera-Bello and Charley Hull on their recent visit. “The Platinum paspalum has endured six months of 45-50C heat from May to October, followed by three months of freezing overnight temperatures with heavy, frequent frosts and fogs from December through February. With the extreme weather conditions, the praise is a testament to the durability of the Platinum paspalum and assurance that the turf selection was the right choice.” Grassing Pakistan’s first signature course TEE BOX Faldo Design created an inland links style layout, with greens that have significant movement and are defended by revetted bunkers Photo: Rumanza Golf Club | P E R F E C T I O N E X P E C T E D O N T H E G L O B A L S T A G E | M A R C O S I M O N E , I T A L Y Bentgrass Pure Distinction® Scan to learn more Seeded Paspalum Pure Dynasty® Tall & Fine Fescues Pure Seed®

17 TEE BOX Vingroup selects design team for new courses at Ha Long Bay Vietnam’s largest conglomerate Vingroup has selected Clayton, DeVries & Pont (CDP) to design two new 18-hole golf courses on the banks of Ha Long Bay (pictured), a Unesco World Heritage Site in the northeast of Vietnam. The golf courses will sit within a massive new US$10 billion urban complex, Ha Long Xanh, that spans 9,000 hectares and is expected to become home to 240,000 people. The golf project will be led by Mike DeVries, who will be supported by Hendrik Hilgert. Several other team members, including Mike Clayton and Frank Pont, will also be on site during construction. “I have visited Vietnam several times in the past 15 years,” said DeVries. “I love the country and its people and am pleased that I and my colleagues will now have the opportunity to deliver courses in one of its most famous and beautiful regions. The intention is to design two excellent golf courses which will be enjoyable for all golfers and could also serve as a venue for a professional tournament should that ever be of interest.” “Our team started liaising with our counterparts at Vingroup in January,” said Hilgert. “Our initial plans are already well advanced.” “We are delighted to be undertaking the partnership’s first project on the Asian continent in Vietnam, a country whose population is embracing the game of golf at a quite staggering rate,” said Edward Cartwright, chairman of CDP. “We are honoured to be working for Vingroup, whose Vinpearl and Vinhomes subsidiaries will be overseeing the development of Ha Long Xanh’s main facilities.” Photo: iStock

THE B IG P I CTURE TEE BOX The par-five fifteenth hole, known as Pirate’s Plank, at the Tom Doak-designed Cape Kidnappers golf course, located south of Hawke’s Bay on New Zealand’s North Island, photographed by Jacob Sjöman. “Sometimes when I arrive at a very special hole on a golf course, I feel as if I want to spend as much time as possible there to do it justice,” said the Swedish photographer. “When I arrived at the fifteenth at Cape Kidnappers, I had to pinch myself to realise that I was not dreaming.” Superintendent Brad Sim and his crew are nearing completion of a project to improve turf quality on the course, with assistance from Renaissance Golf Design’s Angela Moser. Greens will be reinstated to their original size, with the original contours restored. On fairways, turf will be replaced with a new bentgrass variety. “We are happy to see the work being done with the purpose that the course will play how it used to play,” said Moser. The course will reopen for play on 1 July. For another view of the fifteenth at Cape Kidnappers, turn to page 40. 18

19 Photo: Jacob Sjöman

20 Design duo seize opportunity for total rebuild of Kentucky course Brian Ross and Colton Craig have completed a redesign of the 18-hole course at the former Cave Valley Golf Club in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Now named Park Mammoth Golf Club, the layout will open on 28 April. The course was purchased in late 2019 at a bankruptcy auction and in January 2020 the owners appointed Ross and Craig to oversee a small renovation project, which included adding the first bunkers to the layout. A plan was approved in February 2020. “They began clearing trees the next day, but it was not long before the project scope grew,” said Ross. “By mid-March, the project had evolved from a small renovation into a total rebuild. It can’t be overstated how big of an opportunity this turned out to be for two architects whose respective businesses were, at the time, both less than one year old! “The decision to rebuild all the greens gave us the opportunity to make the course markedly better so we took the ball and ran with it. As we were already under construction, every design decision from that point forward was made in the field, on the f ly. I personally shaped the golf course features – with an assist from Jay Smith early on – and we finished many of them by hand, along with our two interns, Scott and Lawson. “The client allowed us to build whatever we felt was best for the golf course. Our only instructions were that it had to be fun to play and that it would keep people coming back again and again. It remains to be seen whether we achieved those goals, but I believe we did!” The major aspect of the project has been the rerouting, which has included the nines being switched. The architects have also extended the course from 5,884 to 6,165 yards. The original opening three holes have now become holes ten to twelve. “I really disliked the old first, a 299yard par four with a 100-degree dogleg that required you to thread your tee shot through a 17-yard gap between two large trees,” said Ross. “I came up with a proposed routing that would completely alter the layout of these three holes, and we pitched the idea at a site visit in early February 2021. Fortunately, the owners unanimously agreed to make the changes on the spot! This was, in part, what eventually led to the dramatic increase in the overall project scope, too. “I believe the changes we made vastly improved this section of the course. While it’s not the opener anymore, the new tenth hole is now a 336-yard par four with a great riskTEE BOX

21 reward tee shot that plays straight ahead to a 14,500-square-foot double green we created by combining the new green with the old fourth green – now the thirteenth.” Ross and Craig were able to create a 109-yard par three at the eleventh that plays across a valley to the original first hole’s green. “This change allowed us to dramatically increase the variety in the par threes,” said Ross. “Previously, there was only a 23-yard difference between the longest and shortest par threes. Now, there’s a 131yard difference! “The last puzzle piece required clearing a large section of forest to create an epic downhill tee shot for the long par-four twelfth hole, which continues out to the original green site for this hole. This allowed us to gain 50 yards while also opening up one of the best views on the course and providing the golfer with the chance to really let one rip!” Twelve greens are in new locations, while the other six remain where they are but have been substantially renovated, apart from the ninth. A couple of the biggest changes to greens include moving the fifteenth’s 50 yards right across a deep valley and lengthening the seventeenth’s by 60 yards. “The greens we inherited were 3,700-square-foot ovals with five-toseven per cent back-to-front slopes, and thatch so thick you could bounce on them like a trampoline,” said Ross. “Having the opportunity to rebuild all the greens was a gamechanger for this project. It turned what would’ve been a nice story about a solid, low-budget renovation into a golf course that I believe can challenge for the title of best public course in Kentucky.” The new greens are on average about 70 per cent larger than what existed before. “They are full of internal contour, sneaky false fronts, and tucked pin positions,” said Ross. “Most slope off in multiple directions which will provide great variety in the dayto-day setup.” The project has seen 25 bunkers added to the course (10 fairway and 15 greenside). Ross says his highlight bunkers are the 168-square-foot pot bunker fronting the eleventh green, the 4,235-square-foot hazard (pictured) that separates the second and fourth greens, and the 12-foot-deep pit that guards the left side of the fifteenth green. Fifty new tees have also been added. “We were able to improve the f low and sightlines on the course by making simple, slight adjustments to the angles of the holes,” said Ross. “This was accomplished most notably on holes nine and seventeen. There are also a few alternate tees located throughout that will give some f lexibility in course setup.” Photo: Ross Golf Design The new routing has seen the two nines switched and 12 greens moved

22 TEE BOX “ What is nice is that 25 years later they still want me back” GCA spoke with Jonathan Gaunt about returning to Breinholtgård Golf Club in Esbjerg, Denmark, to oversee a renovation project How did the new project come about? I designed the golf course in 1992 for the previous owner, Preben Christensen, which is within a few kilometres of the west coast of Denmark on the Jutland peninsula. I was quite young at the time, 28 years old or so, when I designed 18 holes – the Sletten and Skoven nines – with a local building architect, Michael Møller, designing the Ådalen nine on his own later. Breinholtgård has happily – and profitably – operated since then and, a few years back, I was invited to the club’s 25th anniversary - their jubilæum. I went to the event, and I was asked, “when are you going to come back and advise on some course improvements for us”. Following the jubilæum event, I returned to the club twice and soon after completed a full course review and created a master plan, with various upgrades across all three nines. What work have you completed so far? Last autumn we worked with Polish contractor All Golf Services on the fourth and ninth holes of the Sletten nine. We’ll be working on all 27 holes over the next two or three years – we’ll be resuming renovation work on the Sletten nine again this coming autumn. Our work on Sletten’s par-three ninth included creating a new spring-fed irrigation lake, extending the green, rebunkering, and creating a new tee complex… it is effectively a new hole. At the fourth, another par three, we have extended that hole into an area of grassland beyond the green. So, we’ve turned it from a par three to a four – there were already three par threes – so that nine has now become a par 36. The site is amazing – it’s rolling heathland, pine woodland and sandy grassland… it’s a really beautiful site, with wider views of the surrounding forest and farmland. What is nice is that 25 years later they still want me back. I designed THE INTERV I EW with Jonathan Gaunt Work on Sletten’s par-three ninth includes rebunkering, extending the green and the creation of a new irrigation lake Photo: Mogens Mikkelsen

23 the course when I was young, and I admit it wasn’t exactly what I would have wanted, especially as the contractor at the time of the build hadn’t worked on a golf course before. It’s been good to come back and put right some of those things that didn’t quite work out 25 years ago and to have a second chance at creating the course I envisioned. How is the club operating during renovation work? Breinholtgård will only do work towards the end of the summer/ early autumn. The nice thing is that they can take nine holes out of play to do renovations, with members and visitors still able to play a full 18. Being able to keep 18 holes open for play is one of the issues of doing work on an existing course as trying to keep a full 18 open throughout a renovation process is quite difficult. But at Breinholtgård, we don’t have that problem and we can crack on making the necessary changes without disrupting play. Sletten’s par-three fourth has been extended into an area of grassland beyond the green to become a par four Gaunt’s new master plan sees every hole of the Sletten (red numbers) and Skoven (blue numbers) nines worked on in some way Images: Gaunt Golf Design

24 TEE BOX Photos: Arnold Palmer Design Company APDC focuses on playability for Seattle renovation Seattle Golf Club in Washington state will hold a grand reopening of its 18 holes in May following a renovation completed by Thad Layton of Arnold Palmer Design Company. In 2017, the club identified the need to renovate greens, greenside bunkers, and surrounds to improve playability, drainage, and aesthetics. Layton was appointed to prepare a master plan and oversee the work with Tacoma-based golf contractor Ridgetop Construction. “Years of sand splash buildup from greenside bunkers had eliminated some of the most interesting hole positions,” said Layton. “On these greens, we restored the old perimeters and elevations to increase pinnable areas and promote drainage. We also completely rebuilt five greens to permanently solve playability issues that arose from severe internal slopes.” To complement the new strategy at the greens, Layton made fairway bunker modifications on the second, third, fourth, and tenth holes. Several new tees were also constructed on holes one, five, nine and sixteen to add distance options. “Our objective was to maintain Seattle GC’s storied past while enhancing the strategic options and beauty of one of the most iconic clubs in the Pacific Northwest,” said Layton. “That amounted to a three-pronged approach of restoration, renovation, and remodel. We tightened up the relationship of greenside bunkers and eliminated sand in key areas to increase recovery options. We also replaced organics in the approaches with sand to get the ball rolling in what can be a very wet climate.” Top, the new fairway bunker complex on the par-four second and above, the resculpted bunkers set up a new green on the par-five ninth

25 Caspar Grauballe is progressing with major renovation work at Golf de Rougemont-le-Château in eastern France, close to the borders of Germany and Switzerland. Grauballe has created a development plan for the course – a Robert Berthet design that opened in the late 80s – and initial work, the construction of new tees, took place in autumn 2021. The contractor Celtic Golf Management returned in March 2022, building a new hole and new practice greens. “My plan aims to improve the playing experience by developing the framework for better playing surfaces, changing the layout to reduce the climbs on certain holes, making the course more visually attractive and reducing the blindness of a few holes,” said Grauballe. This has involved some rerouting of the layout. “The rerouting uses much of the existing hole locations, but there are major changes on both nines,” said Grauballe. “A new short par four is introduced as the fifth hole, and the ninth is an amalgamation of the old sixth and ninth holes, to form a great par five. “On the back nine, a new fourteenth hole is introduced on new land; a par four playing from an elevated tee position to a rolling fairway with great views towards the village. The old seventeenth is being replaced as well. This opens up some changes that will reduce the climbs for players and also introduces a new thirteenth hole – a par three sitting on the top of the site with tremendous views across the landscape. The eighteenth [pictured] will change from a short par five with a blind drive to a par four with a very dramatic tee shot to the fairway and green – 25 metres below – next to a lake.” Grauballe’s plan, which will be carried out over the next few years, also includes renovating greens and installing a new irrigation system from Toro. “The players will experience a course with challenges that are visible and with an emphasis on playability,” said Grauballe. “Blind holes will disappear, and the greens will feature more movement than the current ones, putting more focus on the short game.” Photo: Caspar Grauballe Grauballe reroutes layout at Golf de Rougemont

26 TEE BOX Construction work is advancing on the first of two Nicklaus Design courses at the new Rose Canyon resort in Ha Nam, an hour’s drive south of Hanoi, Vietnam. “The golf course site was an old quarry comprising impressive nearvertical mountains, low lying f lat lands and water filled excavations,” said Sean Quinn, senior design associate at Nicklaus Design. “The dramatic mountains relate to every part of the golf course. Holes play between and around the monolithic Two of the par threes, the eleventh and fifteenth, play directly over water Greens on the par-five ninth and twelfth holes sit directly against lakes The third can play to an alternate green cut into the mountainside Golfers will bite off as much of the lake as they dare on the seventh and eighth A large lake to the right of the thirteenth and fourteenth holes acts as a buffer to the housing development Rose Canyon (South) COURSE BLUEPR INT

The second hole is a short par four with the option to play directly at the green The fifteenth plays between mountains, giving it an amphitheatre feel The back tee of the opening hole is an extension of the putting green Image: Nicklaus Design forms, with some green sites having 60-metre-high cliff backdrops.” Construction is expected to be completed in late 2022 for a mid-2023 opening. Work on the North course will start as soon as the South is complete. Read more about the project at

29 Newly discovered Park plans to provide reference for Staples’ work FROM THE ARCHI VE Andy Staples – who has worked on Wille Park Jr designs at Olympia Fields (North) in Chicago and Meadowbrook in Michigan, and has also recently been hired by Canadian club Mount Bruno – will reference Park’s original, recently discovered, plans to develop his own master plan to guide work at Weston Golf & Country Club in Toronto, Canada. Among the Park materials Staples is referencing for his new plan are sketches of every hole (sketch of first hole, pictured right), which have detailed annotations about the height and slopes of green complexes and mounds, as well as depth of bunkers. He is also armed with 1947 aerial photography and historic ground shots, plus a 1926 master plan (pictured above) drawn up by Toronto-based engineering firm, John Kennedy Co Ltd. “It’s incredible to have the quality and quantity of resources available for our historical research – the Weston members should be commended,” said Staples. Photos: Weston G&CC

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31 TEE BOX Crafter and Van Der Veen focus on embracing linksland feel at Glenelg A four-year renovation project is under way at Glenelg Golf Club in Adelaide, Australia. The plan was developed by Neil Crafter of Crafter + Mogford Golf Strategies in collaboration with Glenelg life member and former professional golfer Bob Tuohy and the club’s project and construction manager Ryan Van Der Veen. Six greens will be completely redesigned, and the remainder will be renovated, bunkers will be rebuilt, and the irrigation infrastructure will be upgraded to a new Rain Bird IC system. Crafter’s plan also includes adding more teeing options, reducing the amount of maintained rough, increasing fairway areas for more shotmaking options, and restoring sparsely vegetated sandy areas with indigenous plantings. Work has been completed on the eighteenth and is in progress on the thirteenth, following preparatory work on the nineteenth hole (pictured). “The extended use that the nineteenth hole will see over the next four years was the reason upgrade works have recently been undertaken on it to expand the tee and fairway areas and eliminate one greenside bunker,” said Crafter. On the eighteenth, the club reconstructed bunkers, expanded fairway areas, resurfaced the green and replaced an ageing retaining wall to the left of the green. A hybrid style of fairway bunkers that combine revetted and natural sand faces will be developed. “Reducing bunker numbers while enhancing strategy has been a real design challenge, but I expect the reimagined holes will provide a good test of golf for all levels of golfers,” said Crafter, who expects the project to be completed in late 2025. “The visual appeal of the course as an inland links – Glenelg is located on sandy linksland less than a kilometre from the ocean – will be enhanced by the additional sandy rough areas and hybrid bunkers we have envisaged,” said Crafter. “Working collaboratively with Ryan Van Der Veen, an experienced architect and shaper in his own right, is proving very rewarding and the club is gaining the benefits of our combined skills and expertise.” Read more about the Glenelg project on the GCA website Photo: Gary Lisbon

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33 TEE BOX First nine of new 27-hole Cape Verde project opens for play The first nine holes at Viveiro Golf Course have opened for play on the island of Sal, which is part of the Cape Verde archipelago. Italian agronomist Fulvio Bani is leading the project on the desert island that is located 350 miles off the west coast of Africa. The development includes 27 holes of golf along with a clubhouse, hotel, leisure facilities and residential areas. “The strong inf luence of the wind, which comes exclusively from the northeast and can sometimes reach up to 75mph, and the need to save water, led us to create grassy playing areas interrupted by coarse sand sections,” said Bani. “My design avoids penalising the average golfer. “We have used sand that is resistant to the force of wind – the few sand bunkers are small and deep to avoid their emptying by the wind. We also considered the wind’s presence for the placement of tees.” The island is almost absent of rainfall, experiencing around 350 days of sunshine a year. “The orography of the terrain, especially in the steep areas, required us to soften and shape fairways to optimise the visibility of landing areas and spots near greens,” said Bani. “As there are no trees on the site, we planted some tall, native trees to improve visibility of playing areas and to increase the perception distances, especially for doglegs and behind greens.” A computer-controlled Rain Bird irrigation system is installed, operating with integrated control (IC). It features more than 550 rotors, automatic mains filtration and high-density polyethylene pipe. Paspalum Vaginatum from the Pure Dynasty variety has been selected for all playing surfaces. Bani said: “High temperatures heavily inf luenced our choice as they needed to be resistant to the hot climate and to the lack of water.” Photo: Viveiro Golf Course

34 TEE BOX Construction is under way on a new 18-hole golf course, designed by Whitman, Axland & Cutten (WAC), in central Oregon. The Tribute Club at Thornburgh will sit at the base of the Cline Buttes mountains, with sweeping views of the Cascade Range and the Three Sisters peaks. Vegetation on the near-2,000-acre property, which is untouched by development, includes sagebrush and juniper trees that are over 1,000 years old. Used as a family ranch for more than 70 years, there has been a shift in focus for the land over the past 15 years. In 2006, Bill Coore, Ben Crenshaw and Dave Axland visited the site to design a golf course, but the project stalled following the financial crisis. Fifteen years on, the owners decided to revive their plans and contacted Coore, who recommended WAC for the project. “It’s a site that seemed like it had all the things you’d hope for to build spectacular golf that would stand the test of time,” said Rod Whitman. “It spoke to us immediately.” WAC is working with a figure of eight routing. “The most dramatic holes were found at the extents of the loops, giving purpose for a routing that works to highlight the ‘bookends’ of the property,” said Whitman. “A steep ridge dotted with rock outcroppings adds drama to the ‘hub’ crossing between holes ten to eleven, and sixteen to seventeen. The bookends and hub do well to contrast the f latter and wider middle sections of each loop. The result is a fun, dynamic, and varied walk.” Following clearing of the site in summer and autumn 2021, the design team moved in during the winter and began shaping. More than half of the holes have now been rough-shaped and irrigation lakes are nearing completion. Landscapes Unlimited is assisting with construction and grow-in. Six to eight holes will be grassed by late summer. “The mental exercise of considering the limitless types of shots required to access a green, either along the ground or through the air, is both exciting and rewarding,” said Axland. Photo: WAC Golf WAC makes progress with Oregon newbuild

35 “This is compounded when one then considers the putts and recovery shots played over the putting surface contours. Constructing these surfaces from the seat of a bulldozer, while envisioning the ways in which the ball will bounce, roll and change direction, is just as thrilling to me as playing those actual shots.” “As a design team we derive great joy from this artistic effort and believe our passion lingers in the design of the golf course.” “Good green complexes require thought, and that focus should begin on the tee. A green and its surrounds can have a major inf luence on a player’s overall tactical approach to a hole. The greens at Thornburgh are thoughtful and varied, so that different pin positions demand different strategies, day to day.” Keith Cutten said: “This is a wonderful opportunity to showcase the talents of our experienced and talented team. Each golf hole should present a unique challenge, one inspired by nature and contour. “We are just happy to have another fantastic opportunity to build a great golf course that everybody will enjoy.” Preview play is expected to be available in 2023. Photo: Ryan J Birmingham More than half the holes have been rough shaped at The Tribute Club at Thornburgh The cover story of the latest issue of By Design magazine – produced for the American Society of Golf Course Architects by the team responsible for GCA – explores the impact an effective client-architect partnership has on a club’s golf facilities. “There is a balance that must be struck, and I am looked upon to find it,” said David Dale of Golfplan, who has worked with CJ Group for over 25 years, designing and updating both The Club at Nine Bridges and Haesley Nine Bridges in South Korea. The Spring issue of By Design also includes insight from Jon Last of Sports & Leisure Research Group and images from the 2022 GCSAA Conference & Trade Show. To download the latest issue and subscribe to By Design, visit “There is a balance that must be struck” GOOD READ

36 Global round-up TEE BOX Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Southport, England, has appointed Mackenzie & Ebert as course advisors. Tom Mackenzie will be the lead architect, charged with developing a master plan for the course, which has hosted the Open Championship 10 times. Mackenzie also plans to create a shorter layout and to renovate the practice facilities. “Royal Birkdale is quite rightly renowned the world over, so we are obviously delighted and feel honoured to be selected to advise the club,” said Mackenzie. “We look forward to making its wonderful links even more enjoyable for members and visitors alike, enhancing its reputation as one of the great Open venues.” Greg Norman Golf Course Design has completed a ‘remastering’ of the golf course at Aurora Anguilla Resort & Golf Club, located on the Caribbean island of Anguilla. One of the design features brought back to life at Aurora International is the double green at the second and tenth holes (pictured). The par-three second, which measures 194 yards from the back tee, has Rendezvous Beach as a backdrop. The project has included re-grassing playing surfaces, new bunkers, reconstruction of tees and greens, removal of overgrown plants, new forward tees, a total renovation of the irrigation system, and some design changes. Royal Birkdale appoints Mackenzie & Ebert as course advisors Redesigned Aurora International course opens for play Photo: Atmospix – Thomas Fitter Photo: Leo Diaz Design

37 Alan Rijks has returned to Golfbaan de Texelse in the Netherlands to renovate the first nine holes of the Links course. Rijks designed nine holes in the early 1990s before completing the layout in 2014. “The first nine holes were originally made with a little amount of sand,” said Rijks. “We now have used about 65,000 cubic metres to improve this part of the course. One of the nice changes is that we removed the fences on each side of the driving range and replaced them with natural dunes. Now it has a natural look and players on the range think they are playing a links hole with targets.” Photo: Alan Rijks Alan Rijks returns to Texelse for nine-hole renovation The Hyderabad Golf Association has appointed Richardson | Danner Golf Course Architects to transform the course at Hyderabad Golf Club in India. The layout, a David Hemstock design, has holes among the granite walls of the Golconda Fort, a fortified citadel built in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. “Our mission is to bring international exposure to the city of Hyderabad,” said Dayakar Reddy, president of the Hyderabad Golf Association. “We are looking to the future to train athletes for the Olympics and to play internationally.” Jeff Danner, who will manage the project for the design firm, said: “The unique character of the site has created a very distinct identity that will be leveraged to enhance visibility to the golf course.” Photo: Richardson | Danner Golf Course Architects Richardson and Danner begin design work at Hyderabad Pickala Golf in southern Finland has appointed Lassi Pekka Tilander to design a new nine-hole par-three course. “The area reserved for the new Rock course is unique,” said Tilander. “The ancient rocks, partly covered with moss and low-growing conifers, create a magical atmosphere. The golfing experience will be new to players; building a standard course on such a site is impossible. But it is perfect for a stunning par-three course as each hole does not require much more than a tee and a green.” The layout, with holes ranging from 90 to 260 yards, is being built between the club’s Forest and Park courses. Photo: Tilander Golf Design Pickala Golf targets 2024 opening for new short course