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Saturday, November 2, 2013

Spring Lake Starts Renovation

Golf course architecture firm Tripp Davis and Associates has started work to carry out its two-year Master Plan for renovating and restoring Spring Lake Golf Club’s historic course.  Located on New Jersey’s north shore, the club’s original 18 holes were designed by George Thomas (the genius behind Riviera Country Club) in 1911.  In 1918, A.W. Tillinghast, one of America’s greatest golf course architects, was engaged to redesign, strengthen and update the course.

Golf architect Tripp Davis, who is noted for his work with historic golf courses around the country, was asked by Spring Lake Golf Club in 2011 to create a strategic plan that would restore the character of the course first laid out by Thomas and later improved upon by Tillinghast.  “Our direction and focus in developing a Master Plan for Spring Lake was to keep Thomas’s solid routing intact, then look to what Tillinghast did so we could work to reestablish the importance of angles off the tees, restore and enhance the strategic intent of the bunkers and return them to their original style,” said Davis.  “Additionally, fairway widths that were altered over the years will be regained, the once sandy scrub areas that were a prominent feature will be reintroduced, some greens will be rebuilt, and overall there will be a more open feel to the landscape.”

With Spring Lake being so close to the Atlantic, Davis and his team will introduce Fine Fescues in various areas to promote more of a seaside feel.  While making the course more strategically interesting for modern play, the end result is to let golfers experience a step back in time.

“I am very excited to start our work at Spring Lake,” Davis commented.  “It is a special place that will have a stronger connection to its heritage when we are done.”

The Master Plan is being implemented in phases with the first phase beginning October 15th
on the back nine bunkers, sandy scrub areas, select tees, the expansion of certain greens and  fairways, planting of Fine Fescue areas, as well as some drainage improvements.  The front nine changes are scheduled for October 2014.  Tripp Davis and Associates most recently completed a renovation and restoration of the Tillinghast designed Brook Hollow Golf Club in Dallas, Texas.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

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