A Golf Course Builders Association of America member survey and feedback from the country’s leading golf course construction companies paint a relatively optimistic picture of the renovation and remodeling market.
About 70 percent of GCBAA members reported cancelled projects of some kind, but nearly 30 percent said they had experienced no significant impact on schedules. “I think what surprised me the most is that compared to the 2009 recession in golf, our members are more optimistic about the outlook post-COVID-19,” GCBAA executive director Justin Apel says.
38 percent of GCBAA members said they expect things to stay the same or even increase in the short term, while 22 percent indicated they were unsure but optimistic that everything will return to normal. Only 9 percent said their future projects have been cancelled and they are worried about course closures, while another 9 percent reported current projects are being postponed and they weren’t seeing new projects.
In memoriam: Former USGA Green Section agronomist and national director Bill Bengeyfield passed away June 3 at age 97. Bengeyfield first joined the Green Section in 1955, serving as an agronomist until 1978, when he became the director of golf courses and park maintenance at Industry Hills Golf Club in Southern California. He rejoined the Green Section in 1981 and served as national director from 1982 until his retirement in 1990.
Short course news: Pebble Beach Company and Tiger Woods, through his TGR Design firm, are transforming the former site of Peter Hay Golf Course. The new facility will include a short course comprised of nine par-3 holes measuring 670 yards total, a 20,000-square-foot putting course, and a 5,000-square-foot food and beverage venue.
Course management: Troon is partnering with The National Links Trust, a non-profit entity formed to preserve and protect affordable, accessible and architecturally engaging public access golf, to manage the operations for East Potomac Park, Langston and Rock Creek Park golf courses in Washington, D.C.
Tartan Talks No. 48
Think you have a crowded hard drive? Documenting a recent project forced golf course architect Todd Schoeder to use 75.92 gigabytes of digital space.
Plans. Sketches. Text documents. Spreadsheets. Photos. If it happened at Denver’s City Park Golf Course over the last four years, it’s likely resting in one of the 5,000 files accumulated by Schoeder.
“Luckily,” Schoeder says, “I have a big hard drive. It goes to show there’s a lot of thought put into this and it’s not just me. It’s all of my colleagues that are doing this for a living as well. We’re passionate. That’s why we are in this.”
Schoeder exudes passion in a Tartan Talks podcast. For Schoeder, that passion stems from playing a 6-hole loop as a child and working for legendary superintendent Larry Mueller at Seth Raynor-designed Minnesota Valley Country Club.
“I was very, very fortunate growing up in Minnesota, surrounded by many classic golf courses, to have the opportunity to work on a Seth Raynor course,” he says. “It brings back a lot of memories. In a roundabout way working on a course, on the grounds crew as a teenager all the way through high school and college, brought me to design.”
Enter bitly.com/ToddSchoeder into your web browser to learn more about Schoeder’s career path and his recent work.