Golf Course Management

JUL 2018

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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26 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 07.18 Editor's note: The Drawing Board is a quarterly feature that spotlights new golf course development and construction projects worthy of note to superintendents in both the United States and around the world. The feature is authored by Adam Lawrence, the editor of Golf Course Architecture magazine as well as By Design, the quarterly publication of the American Society of Golf Course Architects. Baylands Golf Links Palo Alto, Calif. Architect Forrest Richardson's rebuild of this munici- pal course in Palo Alto, Calif., reopened in May. "It began as work to make way for flood control," Richardson says. "We quickly focused on how the community could benefit in many more ways, such as returning the environment to natural habitat and opening the golf course to more di - verse uses." "It was the classic domino effect. We looked at all op - tions with the best outcome being a fresh look at every- thing. It also gave us the chance to replace some very old and tired infrastructure." Though the project faced some delays due to con - cerns around the protection of endangered species, final approval for the plans was granted in the summer of 2016. More than 600 nonindigenous trees have been removed from the course, while 10 acres of new wetlands have been created, and 40 acres of ground replanted with trees and grasses native to the San Francisco Bay Area. Overall, there has been a reduction of 40 percent in the area of maintained turf — down from 135 acres to just 81 — and a 35-percent reduction in the usage of potable water. Platinum TE paspalum has been planted in fairways and roughs, while the greens are Pure Select bentgrass. Richardson's design at Baylands incorporates five par-3 and par-5 holes. Holes No. 3 and No. 15 share a 20,000-square-foot double green, while the 14th has two separate greens — one a punchbowl and the other set on a narrow peninsula in a wetland. Steve Hoying, a six-year GCSAA member, oversees maintenance as superintendent at Baylands. The Greenbrier White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. A new par-3 course will open in August at the legend- ary Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia. The Ashford Short Course, which will be available for play by both members of the Greenbrier Sporting Club and resort guests, is a nine-hole course with holes ranging from 56 to 112 yards. The holes honor a number of golf architects, including C.B. Macdonald, designer of the Old White Course in 1914, and Seth Raynor, who created the Greenbrier Course in 1924. The par-3 course was created after huge floods that hit the Greenbrier in 2016, and has been designed by Kelly Shumate, the resort's director of golf course maintenance and an eight-year GCSAA member. Shumate made use of historical photography of the golf courses at the Green - brier while planning the course, in particular noting the close connection between holes on the older courses at the resort — a theme that made perfect sense given the desire to make the new short course walking-only. Shu - mate placed a number of well-known MacRaynor-style (a well-known play on the names of the two legendary archi - tects in the golf design community) template holes on the course, including a punchbowl and a Redan, which he said were easy to route and required very little earth movement. The designer reckons that the Ashford Short Course will take around 45 minutes for two golfers to play, walk - ing. "The idea is you can kind of drop a ball anywhere and have fun — hopefully it will encourage more people to play," Shumate says. Royal Golf Club Lake Elmo, Minn. The course at Royal Golf Club in Lake Elmo, Minn., has reopened for play following a complete remodel of the former 3M-owned Tartan Park facility. The project, backed by developer Hollis Cavner, was put together by Thad Layton of Arnold Palmer Design Co., incorporating design ideas of Annika Sorenstam on the front nine — known as the Queen's nine — and Arnold Palmer on the back nine — the King's nine. "The two nines are very different by virtue of the ex - isting topography," Layton says. "The front nine is situated low and between a number of massive ridges that bisect the property, while the back nine sits higher on a plateau The drawing board overlooking Horseshoe Lake." The site has bold glacial to- pography, natural lakes and mature trees. Some sections of the previous Tartan Park course have been rerouted, and all 18 green complexes have been rebuilt at the property overseen by superintendent Michael Sonnek, a 20-year member of GCSAA. Layton explained that a minimalist approach was applied, using contours as strategy and just 26 bunkers which unify the feel and aesthetic of both nines. He said that the fairways are wide, and interesting native contours gave the team the opportunity to design engaging green complexes that fit gracefully into the natural landscape. "We are confident that the greens are unique to the Min - nesota golf scene," Layton says. Royal Golf Club is Sorenstam's first U.S. project. "We enjoyed collaborating with Annika. Our respective philos - ophy on design was very much in alignment in that golf should be fun," Layton says. "Her enthusiasm and love for growing the game was apparent throughout every phase of the project." Coul Links Dornoch, Scotland Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw's new Coul Links course, close to the town of Dornoch in northern Scotland, looks set to get the go-ahead shortly after a meeting of the local council's planning committee. Highland Council's North - ern Planning Committee met recently to discuss the ap- plication but were unable to come to a final decision after officials revealed that a last-minute objection from cam - paigning group Not Coul had been received and needed to be considered by the Scottish Environmental Protection Authority (SEPA). Nonetheless, the committee was able to debate the proposal, which had been recommended for rejection by the council's own planning officers, and all seven mem - bers that spoke did so in favor of granting permission. Developer Todd Warnock says: "We are humbled that the council members spent so much time thought - fully considering the topic. The fact that every council member who spoke was supportive and that no council member was prepared to put forth a motion for refusal was deeply gratifying." "Today has been extremely positive, and we think it is a big step forward for the golf development," says Coul Links project manager Chris Haspell. "We feel that the councilors, SEPA, SNH and even the opposition have offered up a good debate. We believe that in the next few weeks the remain - ing issues will be resolved, and we look forward to the next meeting, and hopefully a positive decision." Adam Lawrence Twitter: @adammlawrence The Ashford Short Course at The Greenbrier. Photo by Kelly Shumate

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