The decision by the city of Louisville, Colorado, to hire Kevin Norby, ASGCA Associate, and Herfort Norby Golf Course Architects in 2011 for a long-range improvement plan at Coal Creek Golf Course proved fortunate two years later when a heavy storm hit. The result was an accelerated timetable on renovations at the course originally designed by ASGCA Past President Richard Phelps, which has reopened.

“Golf Course Architecture” reports:

“The course suffered devastating storm damage back in August 2013, which saw trees toppled, cart paths damaged, bridges and bunkers washed out, damage to the irrigation system, and tees, greens and fairways across the course covered with rock and silt.

“While the storm had a devastating effect on the course, it did provide Norby with the opportunity to accelerate some of his initial plans for Coal Creek.

“The project has now been completed, with Norby saying the changes to the course are quite remarkable.

“With assistance from Nebraska-based golf course contractor Landscapes Unlimited, the course at Coal Creek has been re-graded to help protect it against the type of flooding seen during the 2013 storm.

“This proved valuable recently, when storms struck the site again in May 2015. However this time the newly introduced drainage and collection areas proved sufficient to prevent significant damage to the course.

“With regards to the course itself, the re-grading has created additional contouring and undulation in fairways and green surrounds which were previously flat. This helps enhance both strategy and drainage.

“Hundreds of trees across the course have also been removed, while greens on holes eight and sixteen have been moved to enhance sight lines.

“A number of bunkers were added, while others were moved or removed as part of the work.

“’We aligned all teeing areas, regrassed the green surrounds and moved cart paths to help direct play away from houses on some holes,’ Norby explained.

“The architect also expressed his satisfaction with the outcome of the project, saying that the ‘new’ course ‘differentiates Coal Creek from other municipal golf courses in the area’.”