ASGCA Past President Pete Dye designed the Ford Plantation course in Richmind Hills, Georgia, in 1986. Nearly 30 years later, he was on-hand every step of the way in a major rennovation. The course reopened October 1.
The online article reported, “The renovations stemmed from some major infrastructure failures. Two inches of rain would cause the links-style back nine, which includes sections resting below sea level, to close for two days. Director of golf course maintenance Nelson Caron says the back nine lost close to 60 play dates per year because of failing drainage. The irrigation system had not been replaced since the Dye-designed course opened in 1986.
“Construction started on Oct. 1, 2013. Dye spent more than 40 days at the course during the construction process.
“‘I was really, really enthused with the enthusiasm he had for this project,’ says Alan McCurrach, who has worked regularly with Dye since construction started at TPC Sawgrass Stadium Course in 1980. ‘I was surprised actually. He would come for a site visit and I would say, ‘See you next month.’ And two weeks later, he would call me and say, ‘I’m on my way.’ Then, I would say, ‘I will see you in a month.’ And two weeks later, he would say, ‘I’m on my way.’ He just kept coming in, coming in. He wanted to be here. For the whole job to get its energy from an 88-year-old was pretty amazing.’
“While Dye, who turns 89 next month, was there, The Ford Plantation received 58 miles of new drainage and irrigation, an advanced storm water system that handles 16,000 gallons of water per minute, 304 extra course yards, different looks on every hole and 1.7 million square feet of Celebration Bermudagrass sod.
“Dye returned to Georgia on Nov. 8 to inspect his work and chat with members. He received an abundance of positive feedback. ‘You hope it works out,’ Dye says. ‘Fortunately, very fortunately, everybody seems to think what we have done is OK.’”
The entire article can be found here.