Golf is not only a popular sport in the U.S. but also a large industry. A 2019 Forbes magazine report says that one-third of the U.S. population plays golf. According to estimates, golf courses and country clubs in America are projected to earn around $23.6 billion by 2022. Designing a golf course can be a complex affair because you need to keep in mind not only the design of the greens but also the appeal of the location, infrastructure and facilities, connectivity, and more. A brief look at some of the top things that golf course designers need to keep in mind:
The Most Appealing Location
Every successful golf course not only has its own challenges that make it interesting to the players but is also remembered for its unique location and scenic attractions. For example, golfers from all over the world will not be able to imagine the Pebble Beach course without its awesome vista of crashing waves and cliffs. The most popular golf courses in the world are located in places with outstanding natural beauty. For this reason, course designers invariably recommend owners to find sites that look great and can be a compelling tourist attraction.
Building and maintaining a world-class golf course is expensive! In addition to the capital need to build it in the first place, you can easily spend a humongous amount in maintaining it. Apart from a big large maintenance team, you will also require an assured supply of freshwater for keeping the greens and the associated landscaping in top condition, the entire year-round. A dry turf, according to experts in TimberStone Golf Course, is not only unattractive but prone to disease that can increase the maintenance cost to a point where it is not sustainable.
The Design of the Greens
For a course to be successful, the design must be challenging for the pros while being entertaining for the rest. Even though the difficulty level, to some extent, can be tweaked by mowing techniques, it can be far more effective to get in right at the design stage itself. A good golf course must be interestingly landscaped while ensuring that at least three-quarters of the area is pinnable, has turf of the best quality, and importantly, good drainage. The location of the greens and their shapes are not isolated factors but together need to achieve a balance and rhythm conducive to a good golfing experience.
With developers looking to make the golf course central to the value addition of the typically lucrative residential development, designers will need to keep in mind the need to plan a golf course layout that has the maximum possible frontage to the overlooking properties. However, they also need to ensure that golfers do not get the feeling of being overlooked and becoming secondary to the design. The balance can often be tricky because of the requirement of keeping both golfers and developers happy at the same time. Golf course designers will also need to rein in their creative landscaping instincts so that the golf course can be financially viable, both in terms of capital expense and maintenance.