In the Fall 2010 edition of “By Design” magazine, Bill Yates, founder and developer of Pace Manager Systems, comments on the tension that often exists between golf course design and management in regards to pace of play.

Yates writes that golf course architects determine how long it should take to play a course, while golf course management teams grapple with how long it actually takes to play the course. Based on the playing length, the location and difficulty of obstacles, and the travel distances from greens to tees—all elements of the routing and design—an objective measure of the time it should take to play a course can actually be calculated, comments Yates.

The article includes thoughts from Forrest Richardson, ASGCA, who says architects need to design a course that has a good natural flow. The flow is about rhythm, balance, and sequence, and “a routing plan must give careful attention to each,” he states.

Bobby Weed, ASGCA also shares some remarks in the article: “The single most important aspect of golf course design may be the time spent routing. … It is absolutely essential to route courses that efficiently use the land, thereby allowing players to use their time efficiently.”

Yates suggests using technology to predetermine the impact of alternate design options on future management practices. Ultimately, having accurate monitoring tools and the right starting interval at the outset will enable the management team to reduce on-course waiting, optimize round times, and maximize the revenue-generating utilization of the design.

To read Yates’ article in its entirety, please visit here.

“By Design” is an electronic magazine focusing on the development of better and more sustainable golf facilities. To subscribe to “By Design,” available free of charge, please visit here. Additional information regarding the magazine is available here.

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