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GolfClubAtlas.com => Golf Course Architecture => Topic started by: Brian Marion on October 31, 2021, 12:32:29 PM

Title: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Brian Marion on October 31, 2021, 12:32:29 PM
Andy Johnson is reporting that Tyler Rae and Kyle Franz are being hired to renovate Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga.


Has this been discussed here already and I missed it?
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Terry Lavin on October 31, 2021, 01:41:41 PM
Tyler Rae did some great work at Beverly CC and Evanston GC here in Chicagoland.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Brian Finn on October 31, 2021, 06:30:34 PM
This is great news.  If I understand the plan correctly, Kyle Franz, Tyler Rae, and Jim Ryan will execute the plan Gil Hanse developed for the club several years ago.  The course is very good in its current state.  With greens expansion, significant bunker work, and all of the other details that were drawn up, it will be really special.  Congratulations to the members, some of whom have been pushing for this for quite a while.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Joel_Stewart on October 31, 2021, 08:12:07 PM
Didn't Brian Silva do quite a bit of work there just a few years ago?  Are they fixing his mistakes or highlighting the features?
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Carl Rogers on October 31, 2021, 08:14:08 PM
How does this effort fit into the write up on the 'Courses by Country' on the web site?


The Dixie Cup experience at LM was unfortunately diminished by constant rain.  I remember reviewing the original, highly detailed and complex contour map of the course.


Very hard walk.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Jason Thurman on November 01, 2021, 08:25:45 AM
Didn't Brian Silva do quite a bit of work there just a few years ago?  Are they fixing his mistakes or highlighting the features?


As I understand it, we should see this as another step in the successful reestablishment of Raynor's original vision, with Silva's work an also-essential part of that journey.


Doug Stein and the late King Oehmig helped explain some of the changes at Lookout Mountain to a group of us back in 2014. Doug could shed a lot more light. But it's a course with a pretty wild backstory: bold original design, never quite realized due to factors ranging from lack of soil to Raynor's death, fallen into semi-disrepair through years of neglect until the original plans were discovered and a few members spearheaded an effort to pursue what could have been.


Results were already pretty excellent, and I hope to see the results of this upcoming work firsthand someday.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Brian Finn on November 01, 2021, 09:34:18 AM
Didn't Brian Silva do quite a bit of work there just a few years ago?  Are they fixing his mistakes or highlighting the features?
Definitely just a continuation of what was already done by Brian Silva.  The work he did there seemed very good, but I don't think they were able to do everything they hoped for.  As Jason mentions, Doug Stein could provide all the detail and history. 
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Ben Hollerbach on November 01, 2021, 09:41:08 AM
Looking at old aerials of Lookout from before Silva, the change in bunkering is stark in the best of ways. The same can be said for the tree trimming. Its hard to believe that the views from the clubhouse off of the mountain to the SE would have been blocked at one points.

Comparing what has been done before to what Hanse proposed in 2009, it looks like a continuation of what was already started 20 years ago. I'll be curious to see what they do with the front of the 14th green and if the fairway leading up to that green is restored.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/hyYXkSiReQO2x70OBDhQkWoeOE73dO4vArNVHi24Yx13nTaLd8vKqTrsGyCD-6D77yCQ51WlqVRBSzdJQ1smDQhT5tWGwIXkRV3nYevH_V-3FwFJCZUAwB-cH8HykOMKwAv4FXWOW2Q=w2400)
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Bruce Wellmon on November 01, 2021, 09:47:17 AM
I loved my round at LM this summer.
Does anyone know if they are building a new clubhouse at the originally planned location as part of this work? 
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Paul Jones on November 01, 2021, 09:50:23 AM
I loved my round at LM this summer.
Does anyone know if they are building a new clubhouse at the originally planned location as part of this work?


They are not.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: John Kavanaugh on November 01, 2021, 09:50:44 AM
I loved my round at LM this summer.
Does anyone know if they are building a new clubhouse at the originally planned location as part of this work?


I loved that old clubhouse.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Ben Hollerbach on November 01, 2021, 10:14:55 AM
I loved my round at LM this summer.
Does anyone know if they are building a new clubhouse at the originally planned location as part of this work?


They are not.
I would imagine with the formal "merger" with the Fariyland Club a few years ago, the desire for the original clubhouse site has been diminished.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Paul Jones on November 01, 2021, 10:18:09 AM
I loved my round at LM this summer.
Does anyone know if they are building a new clubhouse at the originally planned location as part of this work?


They are not.
I would imagine with the formal "merger" with the Fariyland Club a few years ago, the desire for the original clubhouse site has been diminished.


The vote that passed also included major updates to the Fairyland Clubhouse and few minor updates to the Golf Clubhouse.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Bruce Wellmon on November 01, 2021, 11:29:59 AM
The course is so good in it's current form, already.
Can't wait to see the refined work. 

Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Joel_Stewart on November 01, 2021, 01:48:09 PM
The course is so good in it's current form, already.
Can't wait to see the refined work.


"Refined look" is probably a good call.  I was playing another Raynor that Gil is scheduled to work on in 2022 and the member of the greens committee was pointing out some very small details that Gil was going to fix.


Seems Like Brian Silva has been replaced at quite a few courses the last few years?  Is his eye not as good as other architects or does he not shape and thus not spending as much time on the sites? 
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Paul Jones on November 01, 2021, 03:39:18 PM
The course is so good in it's current form, already.
Can't wait to see the refined work.


"Refined look" is probably a good call.  I was playing another Raynor that Gil is scheduled to work on in 2022 and the member of the greens committee was pointing out some very small details that Gil was going to fix.


Seems Like Brian Silva has been replaced at quite a few courses the last few years?  Is his eye not as good as other architects or does he not shape and thus not spending as much time on the sites?


It could be he is not as good at marketing or clubs want the new/popular architect ?  In other words, I do not know :-).
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Jason Thurman on November 02, 2021, 09:12:10 AM
Joel, I'm not sure if you're trying to come off like a layman looking to disparage a respected practitioner with an objectively excellent portfolio, but... well, that's what it comes off as to me.


What's your experience with Silva's work? Mine is limited to three courses:


I enjoy Lookout Mountain tremendously. I didn't play it prior to his work, but I've listened firsthand to members who drove the creation of the Raynor Committee speak with pride to the work they had accomplished through their partnership with him, and I have no doubt that it was deserved.


The day after my first play at Lookout, I got to play Black Creek. It's absolutely rad, and certainly not the work of a guy with an "eye not as good as other architects." It has a character as remarkable and strong as that of any modern course I've played.


I've also been able to watch Maketewah develop under his renovation plan for the better part of the last decade. His work has improved it visually, strategically, and agronomically.


If you've seen that he's done shitty work, come out and say that. But in the absence of having seen shitty work, maybe consider all the different reasons that an architect nearing 70 who's been active for over 40 years might be scaling back projects.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Doug Stein on November 02, 2021, 11:05:16 AM
Hey guys. The third time was the charm!
Every architect that has ever come to Lookout has praised the work done by Brian Silva. We knew at the time that we weren't going to be able to restore the whole course- it had not ever really been done as far as we knew, other than some work to the hurricane-damaged Charleston CC. Raynor courses were either intact, or not. At that time Yeamans Hall was the course that came closest to being in the shape Lookout was in: the greens occupying only a fraction of the original green pads, and trees having grown up or been planted, and bunkers abandoned.
So when Brian Silva came to Lookout and we said we only have $750k to spend- where will be the most bang for the buck? He advised us that the fairway bunkers were the most important part of the strategy, and they needed to go in. Solid rock! Silva knew- and always said- that "Son of Long Range Plan" would be needed.
We tried a couple of times, but then there was "dot.com" followed by 9/11 followed by a financial meltdown. Some benefactors were unhappy with Silva and pressed for new eyes- but no one ever expressed unhappiness with his work on Lookout, which was really remarkable given the budget.
4 greens at Lookout had been hit with a bulldozer in the 1950's: #11 (Alps), 12, 14, and 17 (double plateau). Silva restored 11 and 17 along with the first restoration work, and those greens are really, really good in my opinion. #12 is likely under the practice green or clubhouse- we're not really sure what happened to it. #14 they tried to fix in the 1950's, but a shelf of rock underneath hurt it- but in 1953, when we think the work was done, the green speeds didn't make the result unplayable. We don't have a clear idea of what the green was like- it's not a clear template like 11 and 17 were, from the original plans (which I have). The hole was described by Charles Banks as modeled after the 6th at Lido, so the hole carries that name. But I don't know what about our 14th resembles the 6th at The Lido. Maybe the cross bunkers?
We got Gil Hanse to draw up "Son of Long Range Plan" in 2009. When the younger members came to me to get Gil to come execute the plan, I told them- he's going to be too busy (he was). So we went with the original strategy: hire a rising star. That turned out to be Kyle Franz, and Tyler Rae- who have also added Jim Ryan to the team. We are ecstatic and looking forward to finally, after 27 years, restoring Lookout Mountain all the way!
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Michael Chadwick on November 02, 2021, 12:39:38 PM
We got Gil Hanse to draw up "Son of Long Range Plan" in 2009. When the younger members came to me to get Gil to come execute the plan, I told them- he's going to be too busy (he was). So we went with the original strategy: hire a rising star. That turned out to be Kyle Franz, and Tyler Rae- who have also added Jim Ryan to the team. We are ecstatic and looking forward to finally, after 27 years, restoring Lookout Mountain all the way!


Doug--what is the club's intended timeline for work and completion?
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Paul Jones on November 02, 2021, 12:51:26 PM
We got Gil Hanse to draw up "Son of Long Range Plan" in 2009. When the younger members came to me to get Gil to come execute the plan, I told them- he's going to be too busy (he was). So we went with the original strategy: hire a rising star. That turned out to be Kyle Franz, and Tyler Rae- who have also added Jim Ryan to the team. We are ecstatic and looking forward to finally, after 27 years, restoring Lookout Mountain all the way!


Doug--what is the club's intended timeline for work and completion?


Golf Course Timeline:
Start 5/2/2022 - Finish 4/29/2023
Work is to be completed by 12/30/2022 and Grow In until 4/28/2023.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Michael Chadwick on November 02, 2021, 01:19:49 PM
Golf Course Timeline:
Start 5/2/2022 - Finish 4/29/2023
Work is to be completed by 12/30/2022 and Grow In until 4/28/2023.


Thanks, Paul. Extensive work indeed!
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Doug Stein on November 04, 2021, 10:09:40 AM
The course will be open until after the "Swing Ding," our member-guest, the first weekend of June, 2022. The May start date is only some minor irrigation work that can start without closing the course. The rest of the schedule posted by Paul is correct.
I think they can beat the schedule if the weather holds out.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: ward peyronnin on November 04, 2021, 05:33:26 PM
Doug I had a great time at LMTN listening to your journey and Norm Collingsworth impersonations( will he be blasting again?). Your course beat me up but it is definitely a learning curve kinda place

I would add the work that Brian has done at Biltmore Forest is excellent; truly a dont miss course if youre in the area.
When I spoke with him last year it seemed he had circled the wagons abit; he was actually a bit difficult to track down so maybe he has limited his practice in some fashion but once i fond him we had a delightful talk
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Philip Gordillo on November 06, 2021, 09:29:46 PM
Doug - So happy for you, LMC, Chattanooga. And get ready for more rounds at Black Creek as well.  Looking forward to my next visit and for your first trip to Metairie CC.  We are scheduled to reopen in December!
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Doug Stein on December 03, 2021, 01:56:39 PM
Philip: it's on my list. Thanks-
Doug
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Anthony Gray on December 04, 2021, 02:42:24 PM



 Will the dip in the bairitz be in the green or in front of it still? Hope they expand that green.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Paul Jones on December 07, 2021, 11:13:17 PM



 Will the dip in the bairitz be in the green or in front of it still? Hope they expand that green.


Here are the changes that were presented for Hole 4:


Add new back tee.
Expand and square up existing main tee.
Shift cart path from the right of the hole to the left to accommodate new bunkering.
Add new forward tee. Construct new bunker per the Raynor plan.
Core out existing right greenside bunker and replace liner and sand for improved playing conditions.
Rebuild and expand existing left greenside bunker.
Largely expand green and consider regrading fairway approach to improve drainage and intended playability.
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Doug Stein on May 23, 2022, 05:01:42 PM
Hey guys,
The restoration work will begin on June 6!
If you'll look at the original Raynor working drawings, you can see that the Biarritz had only the rear portion as green. The hole was listed at 220 yards.
Here's where to find them:
https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipO03jLRxINt_qMdl5PL0qMql3ccepukdsp_pDfMEK_Ix8mRTcP7pETfhfsIZjNYDg?key=bThMTW1iZGd0UmdTbEJnRXVGM3RxTFI1V21BZ2x3
Thanks
Doug
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Mike Sweeney on May 23, 2022, 06:51:35 PM
Doug,


Congrats on this. Wow, this is a throwback post. I was in Chattanooga in April 2021, but logistics prevented seeing Lookout Mountain. We had dinner at the "old" train station, and I hope to get back there some day. People were really nice to us.


Please post pics...
Title: Re: Lookout Mountain Membership Passes Restoration
Post by: Philip Caccamise on May 24, 2022, 07:53:12 PM
Hey guys,
The restoration work will begin on June 6!
If you'll look at the original Raynor working drawings, you can see that the Biarritz had only the rear portion as green. The hole was listed at 220 yards.
Here's where to find them:
https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipO03jLRxINt_qMdl5PL0qMql3ccepukdsp_pDfMEK_Ix8mRTcP7pETfhfsIZjNYDg?key=bThMTW1iZGd0UmdTbEJnRXVGM3RxTFI1V21BZ2x3 (https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipO03jLRxINt_qMdl5PL0qMql3ccepukdsp_pDfMEK_Ix8mRTcP7pETfhfsIZjNYDg?key=bThMTW1iZGd0UmdTbEJnRXVGM3RxTFI1V21BZ2x3)
Thanks
Doug


Congrats! I also am looking forward to seeing the before and after- loved it pre-renovation even if it was that brutally cold and wet Dixie!


The APT players really appreciated the members opening up the course for them last summer, by the way. They raved about it. Hope we do it again!