Golf Course Architecture - Issue 73, July 2023

53 Developing and building a golf course is rarely a quick business. Let’s say you are a wealthy golf lover and would like your own course. First, you need to find some land. We know that the quality of the land is the largest single influence on the quality of the course, so ideally, you’d better find something good – sandy soil and interesting ground contour preferred. If you don’t already own the site, you’ll need to buy it, or at least come to some sort of lease arrangement with the owner. You need a design, and you need to apply to the relevant government agency or agencies for planning consent in all its myriad forms. And then, once you have secured the land, you have a design, and you have permission, you can start building. If you’re lucky and everything falls in line, you might get the course built in a year, but most go over that. Once construction is complete, you need to hand the course over to your grass guys to grow it in, generally taking another year or so (though if you’re in a warm season turf environment, where grass grows quickly, that might be less). You need to construct whatever buildings are needed to operate the course. And then, finally, you, your friends and (hopefully) your paying customers, whether members or green-fee guests, can start playing golf on your new Photo: James Hogg