We have written this guide on how to build a golf course to help you through the process. The specific roles of the golf course architect in making your site a course everyone will want to play are highlighted and at the end are some tips on how to select a golf course architect and the cost of building a golf course.
From concept to completion, your golf course architect will lead your development
Your golf course architect will assess design opportunities and restraints and review site surveys (see common limitations below). They combine these with your objectives and vision for a successful course to create a design concept which shows potential locations of all the major elements of the project.
Common limitations - the common limitations which restrict golf course development are:
The ideal site has gently undulating landforms which can form natural locations for greens, tees and fairways.
Once the feasibility studies are complete, the Masterplan investigates how the design concept will convert into a course people are able to play on and enjoy. This is the stage when the golf course layout, including locations for the clubhouse and maintenance facilities, the playing surfaces and landscape character, location, style and size of features, e.g. lakes, streams, walls, bridges and pathways, will be prepared along with construction programmes and budgets.
The masterplan should be developed by a project team, which is usually led by the golf course architect and typically includes some or all of these specialisms:
Your golf course architect will provide a detailed design package to reflect local planning submission requirements and ease the planning process
Planning requirements differ greatly from one country to another and obtaining planning permission can be burdensome and lengthy. Your golf course architect will provide a detailed design package to reflect local planning submission requirements and make the planning process easier. Your golf course architect will also assist with the preparation of an Environmental Impact Assessment should it be required.
Your golf course architect will prepare detailed documentation, including contracts, plans and specifications to allow the project to be tendered. If you need them to, they will also assist in evaluating tender responses and select the best contractors for you.
The documentation may include plans for:
As your golf course architect understands all elements of the build and will be your project leader, they will assist in developing an accurate construction programme. Part of their role is to regularly visit the site during construction to ensure the course is built according to the contract documents and agreed timetable.
At this point in the development, your golf course will nearly be ready for play, leaving just the final details before it can open. Your golf course architect will mark out mowing lines for the greens, fairways and roughs, and sand lines for the bunkers. The final stage of making their design a reality is to establish a maintenance regime with the course superintendent to create the overall course character.
All EIGCA members are bound by a code of professional conduct and practice.
Golf course design fees are dependent on a variety of factors, such as the type and scale of the project, its technical complexity, the planning approval process, the working practices of the individual golf course architect and the services and conditions imposed by clients. Fees are usually calculated in one of three ways:
To understand more about the amount you will need to invest in engaging a golf course architect, read our advice on golf course design fees.
Click this icon for information from The R&A on the development of affordable golf facilities