How Golf courses are created. Master class from Edwin Roald
Icelandic Golf architect Edwin Roald shared tips on the full cycle of Golf course construction. As Deputy Director of the Iceland Golf Association, Roald was responsible for the reconstruction and construction of new courses. Given the climate similarity of Iceland and Russia, the rich experience of the architect may be of interest to us in many ways.
The construction of a Golf course is a large-scale and multi-stage undertaking, and the success of the entire event depends on how responsible and thoughtful the approach to each of the stages will be.
If the issue of financing does not distract from the creative process, then it’s time to decide on the choice of the site. In order not to waste time on your own research topics, it is better to immediately contact a professional architect.
No matter how important the attractiveness of the territory may seem from a commercial point of view, this is just one item from a large list of criteria that determine the suitability of the land for development.
The suitability of a site for such a specific project is determined by the number of water sources for its subsequent irrigation. An 18-hole Golf course requires about 500-1000 liters of water per 1 hectare of short-cut lawn. On a field with an area of 30 hectares of lawn, the standard water consumption will be about 15-30 thousand liters per day. On average, any field needs irrigation of trees and other vegetation, not taking into account non-standard layout options. Such plots make up approximately 10% of the above-mentioned area. Therefore, on average, the irrigation of the Golf course requires 1500-3000 liters of water per day (during the growth of grass). This is an example of a rough calculation. In each case, the water consumption will depend on the need for water of different varieties of herbs in different climates. Given the possible administrative restrictions on the use of water sources during a drought, the construction of an irrigation pond with water from an underground well will be an excellent alternative.
In this case, the concept of environment should be understood as a socio-economic nuance in addition to nature. Public opinion can become a stumbling block in the implementation of the project if the local population expresses concern about the issue of ecology. The location of the site is also an important economic factor. If the field requires public access, it must be placed near residential areas. However, if it becomes more popular, there is a chance of an influx of people from remote areas. In the event that the Golf course implies a closed nature, a certain point of limited access will be very useful.
It is very important to find out before starting work whether environmental and legal restrictions are imposed on the site you have chosen. In recent years, some field projects have been frozen and such downtime has cost the owners very expensive.
Many countries do not give well-watered plots of land to architects for development. In addition to studying water sources, the architect must consider other environmental aspects: the presence of plants and animals on the site that are protected.
In addition, it is necessary to obtain permission from the administrative authorities to use the land for public purposes.
All of the above aspects should be studied at the beginning of the project, as they are the determining criteria for evaluating the technical capabilities of building a Golf course on the desired site.
Plot size and related characteristics
Compliance of the site with certain standards that allow the construction of the field includes all landscape features: size, terrain and shape. A relatively flat area with minor natural obstacles involves the creation of an 18-hole field and training area on an area of about 50 hectares. In the case of a richer terrain, a section of larger quadrature will be required. In some cases, the terrain depends on how comfortable the game will be and how you will move around the field-on foot or on a Golf cart. It should be noted that the construction of tracks for cars along the fairways will entail extra costs.
An overall assessment of the site layout will also play an important role in the successful future of the playing field project. For safety reasons, there should be no narrow glades or sharp turns on the site. It is necessary to provide sufficient space between the holes, the holes and the boundaries of the site, and between the holes and the territory of another destination within the boundaries of the site (buildings or access road).
Also, the integrity of the site is extremely important. Intersecting communications or a public road reduce the playing area, which leads to the need to connect several parts of the field by means of bridges or tunnels. Additional obstacles on the site are wires and power lines, poles.
If the funds allow, it is advisable to move the power lines to a more convenient location or move them to underground trenches. If the size of the site does not imply the design of an 18-hole field, the architect can suggest the option of creating a 9-hole field of full length (“fields with steam three”), where the distance between the holes is from less than 100 m to just over 200 m.
The heavy load on the lawn, caused by pedestrian traffic and short lawn mowing, requires the soil to be able to remove excess moisture and store it in sufficient quantity for the grass. These qualities have sandy loam, however, today the site with such soil for the construction of the field is difficult to find. A huge number of Golf courses are laid out on heavy soils, which required additional expenses for soil improvement and drainage.
In some cases, you have to work with areas that are deprived of the upper fertile layer of the earth. The need to deliver the missing land significantly affects the cost of the project. This is another criterion to keep in mind when making a final decision about choosing a site.