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Marty Bonnar

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #50 on: January 30, 2011, 05:42:01 PM »
What makes me very happy about this thread is that someone like Ian Andrew would take the time to give us his considered opinion on the subject.

What makes me very sad about this thread is that someone like Ian Andrew would have the time to give us his considered opinion on the subject.

We need people like Ian building golf courses, not talking about them...

v best, Ian,
FBD.
The White River runs dark through the heart of the Town,
Washed the people coal-black from the hole in the ground.

Tim Nugent

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #51 on: January 30, 2011, 06:33:29 PM »
Some more for the Honorable Mention list
The Next Ten
* Cart paths that stand out more than the golf hole
* Tees that point you into the next hole
*  Bunkers with lips in front of them
*  Bunkers above grade level
*  Grass Hollows that look like sand bunkers that the archie decided he didn't need after they were shaped.
*  Heavily contoured fairways with flat greens and vice-versa
*  Water on the right of the opening hole
*  Narrow Tree-lined chutes off the tee
*  Double Dog-legs
*  Drastically down-hill drop shot par 3's

However, I don't mind a par 5 for an opener, as long as it is long enough or otherwise not readily "gone for in 2".  A long par 4 is probably the worst - as it can play like a 5 for many and nothing is worse than standing on the tee while some yahoo who just hit a 230 yd drive waits for the green to clear and then hits a 200 yd 3-wood short of the green.

Same with the finisher.  I like something that allows for a "come from behind" press birdie but can equally deliver a big score if you screw up.

And, a subset of multiple bunker styles is multiple bunker sand types - especially when you see snow white silica "formal" bunkers and tan/brown "waste" bunkers.
Coasting is a downhill process

Tom_Doak

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #52 on: January 30, 2011, 07:12:34 PM »
"I don't have a photo of it, but the worst offender of out of character forced water carry par 3 that I have seen is 8 at Sebonack.  Links style course, with tremendous hole after tremendous hole and then UGH!!!  WTF is this doing here.  And then right back to tremendous holes."


Mac,

I've heard about that pond often.  It was unavoidable.  We actually had to build TWO irrigation ponds for Sebonack, one for the greens and one for everything else ... and the only flat place to build enough water storage for "everything else" was down there by #8.

Plus, the first day I met Mr. Pascucci, he told me he wanted a par-3 hole with water on it, like #12 at Augusta National.  [Which that one isn't, because we couldn't make that shape work with the pond and the driveway.]

I've seen several people give Jack Nicklaus all the "credit" for #8, but it's as much mine as anything else on the golf course.  It is not a personal favorite, though.

One of the coolest things about our project in Florida is that there are several man-made ponds, but they were built years ago, at a scale so big that they don't feel like "golf course ponds" at all.  And sometimes you are ten or twenty or even fifty feet above the water line while playing next to them!
« Last Edit: January 30, 2011, 07:14:12 PM by Tom_Doak »

Andy Troeger

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #53 on: January 30, 2011, 07:23:39 PM »
I agree with most of the list as well, although I could think of exceptions to quite a few of them. I do like the occasional tree used in the middle of play--I think I would like the one at Longshadow.  Admittedly, I tend to like them only when they are tall skinny pines because they tend to create thoughtful situations.

Artificial ponds tend to be overdone, but they can occasionally create intrigue on a hole that needs a bit of help. I can't see their being useful on courses that have good natural features that could be used instead, but on a hole like #18 at Torrey Pines, I think that little pond makes for a much more interesting finish than if you just had a bunker front-left. Its not attractive visually, but the risk/reward it creates would be worth it to me.

I see nothing wrong with downhill par threes over water if not overdone, especially in natural settings. I'd love to see #4 at Banff, and I thought #14 at Pine Valley was one of the better examples out there.

I would prefer a risk/reward hole over a brute finisher, but both are essentially half-par holes, so its not overly concerning to me.

Alex Miller

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #54 on: January 30, 2011, 07:45:24 PM »
Tim,

Why not exclude water from the first hole all together?

Also, why the dislike of double doglegs? They use diagonal hazards to challenge the player in different ways. Pete Dye is wonderful at them and TPC Sawgrass is a fine example of those par 5s (despite the manmade ponds).

Good additions, to which I would also include building up back tee boxes above middle ones on an uphill grade.

Mike Sweeney

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #55 on: January 30, 2011, 08:01:56 PM »

Is it possible to show a picture of your "Target Bunker" example. I did not really understand it.

Mike S,





Thanks. Okay I disagree with you on this one. I know this was a favorite of RTJ who is not loved here, but I like the concept of "show us what you got". Like Sean Arble said, not for 18 holes, but 2 times out of 14, I like it.

The bunkering on that hole is clearly not Arblesqe!

Scott Warren

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #56 on: January 30, 2011, 08:06:16 PM »
Mike, I think he is just referring to the one out deep that you can't reach but are advised to aim at, rather than the overload of flanking bunkers.

I may be wrong, but that is how I understand the term.

Kyle Harris

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #57 on: January 30, 2011, 08:45:49 PM »
Mike, I think he is just referring to the one out deep that you can't reach but are advised to aim at, rather than the overload of flanking bunkers.

I may be wrong, but that is how I understand the term.

One player's target bunker is another 30-handicap's interesting feature for the lay up.

While I agree with much of the list, I can't quite get past the general inconsistency of the premise that features should feel native and natural to the site, yet when it comes to one of the few things that are typically NATIVE and NATURAL to a golf course site (read: a tree used as a centerline hazard) there is much consternation.

How does a bunker, which is constructed and then filled with a non-native material imported to preserve a notion from the original sites where sand blows outs are natural, get a pass when a native, potentially aboriginal feature integrated with the strategy of the hole does not?

Tim Nugent

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #58 on: January 30, 2011, 08:48:17 PM »
Tim,

Why not exclude water from the first hole all together?

AGREED, JUST THINKNG THAT ON THE RIGHT IS MOST AGREEGIOUS

Also, why the dislike of double doglegs? They use diagonal hazards to challenge the player in different ways. Pete Dye is wonderful at them and TPC Sawgrass is a fine example of those par 5s (despite the manmade ponds).

SORRY, REFERRING TO THE RIGHT-THEN RIGHT AGAIN AS OPPOSED TO THE SERPINTINE

Good additions, to which I would also include building up back tee boxes above middle ones on an uphill grade.

YES, BUT SOMETIMES CANN'T BE HELPED.  BUT THAT LEADSME TO "BUILDING ANY TEE BOX UP MORE THAN 18 INCHES"
Coasting is a downhill process

Kyle Harris

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #59 on: January 30, 2011, 08:51:01 PM »
Tim:

William Flynn was among many advocates of building bunkers above grade, especially in locations where they are most likely to collect water.

The proof of the pudding is in the eating, as they say.

Kevin_Reilly

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #60 on: January 30, 2011, 09:16:00 PM »
Just off the top of my head:  Riviera, Sand Hills, Los Angeles CC (North), Olympic (Lake).

Of course San Francisco as well.

Ian, re: trees in the line of play, what do you think about CPC #17? 

I used to like the tree(s) on Stanford #12.  I haven't played there in a while though, so I don't know if their current size has reduced the corridors on the hole.
"GOLF COURSES SHOULD BE ENJOYED RATHER THAN RATED" - Tom Watson

Ian Andrew

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #61 on: January 30, 2011, 10:12:53 PM »
Ian, re: trees in the line of play, what do you think about CPC #17?  

Which tree?


Ian Andrew

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #62 on: January 30, 2011, 10:15:10 PM »
Thanks. Okay I disagree with you on this one. I know this was a favorite of RTJ who is not loved here, but I like the concept of "show us what you got". Like Sean Arble said, not for 18 holes, but 2 times out of 14, I like it. 

For clarity - the third bunker from the right was the specific example

Ian

Duane Sharpe

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #63 on: January 30, 2011, 11:04:21 PM »
Ian
I just have to say that this is most interesting post I have read on GCA in quite sometime. Great job! I actually read all the replies for once.
Hope to see you in Vancouver.
Sharpee

Kris Shreiner

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #64 on: January 31, 2011, 12:31:31 AM »
Ian,

Thanks for an excellent, insightful post. I always enjoy reading your take on things.

While the hesitation to begin with a five makes sense, I believe you, as some others have stated, would start with one if the routing had ground that fit a par five starter. For example, the first hole at Spyglass Hill is the best opening par five I've ever played (perhaps even best opening hole I've ever played period). The ground just screams that for the opener and Jones Sr. delivered in spades.

Your take on departing from the "BEAR"of a finishing hole mantra that many architects seem to have adopted was refreshing. Golf is a hard game at any level. A chance to finish the round with some satisfaction shouldn't always involve a brutal slog to achieve it. The more I reflect on your post, the more I feel strongly that architects should really think about maintaining the enjoyment factor during the round. While demanding golf can surely be part of the equation, interludes of "Jolly Golf" should also find a place in a routing.

If we want people to come to the game, subjecting themselves to the humiliations of its' sometimes, maddening difficulty and ask them to pay good money for the privilege...there has to some fun factored in there or we'll not see them in it for long. Few sports chew up and spiit out shattered participants with more devastating regularity than golf!

Cheers,
Kris
"I said in a talk at the Dunhill Tournament in St. Andrews a few years back that I thought any of the caddies I'd had that week would probably make a good golf course architect. We all want to ask golfers of all abilities to get more out of their games -caddies do that for a living." T.Doak

jeffwarne

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #65 on: January 31, 2011, 01:29:54 AM »


One player's target bunker is another 30-handicap's interesting feature for the lay up.
 

How does a bunker, which is constructed and then filled with a non-native material imported to preserve a notion from the original sites where sand blows outs are natural, get a pass when a native, potentially aboriginal feature integrated with the strategy of the hole does not?

Geez Kyle-you spoiled the groupthink.......
to say nothing of the fact that the tree is also a vertical hazard that may require/allow shaping of the ball if the drive is not positioned strategically.
bunkers are boring and I'd say 80% could go away and the game would be better and cheaper-and more fun for most.

If we can give Pete Dye a pass for #18 at Sawgrass (which happens to be found on 1/2 tour courses) we certainly can give him a pass for the tree hanging out on 16 that adds strategy to the layup
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Sean_A

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #66 on: January 31, 2011, 01:57:11 AM »

Is it possible to show a picture of your "Target Bunker" example. I did not really understand it.

Mike S,





Thanks. Okay I disagree with you on this one. I know this was a favorite of RTJ who is not loved here, but I like the concept of "show us what you got". Like Sean Arble said, not for 18 holes, but 2 times out of 14, I like it.

The bunkering on that hole is clearly not Arblesqe!

Scott

You got that right - disgusting design.  Anybody who looks at that hole and moans about a target bunker is not seeing the forest for the tree.  

Tim - I am not sure what the issue is with

Heavily contoured fairways with flat greens and vice-versa (especially on par 3s)
Narrow Tree-lined chutes off the tee (from the back markers - its fine)
Double Dog-legs (can be some of the best golf holes around)


OT - Tom's comments about Seb's 8th is a perfect example of why its terribly difficut for the no-know guy to evaluate architecture.  Not only was the hole a request from the cheque signer, but other issues were involved as well.  



Ciao
« Last Edit: January 31, 2011, 02:01:31 AM by Sean Arble »
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Ashridge, Kennemer, de Pan, Eindhoven, Hilversumche, Royal Ostend, Alnmouth & Cruden Bay St Olaf

James Bennett

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #67 on: January 31, 2011, 04:43:32 AM »
Ian

a fantastic article.  I hope you choose to submit it with some appropriate photos to a future edition of 'golf architecture'.

well done

James B
Bob; its impossible to explain some of the clutter that gets recalled from the attic between my ears. .  (SL Solow)

Mike Sweeney

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #68 on: January 31, 2011, 05:37:29 AM »
Thanks. Okay I disagree with you on this one. I know this was a favorite of RTJ who is not loved here, but I like the concept of "show us what you got". Like Sean Arble said, not for 18 holes, but 2 times out of 14, I like it. 

For clarity - the third bunker from the right was the specific example

Ian

Thanks, now I completely understand.



Ian,

Any thoughts on this one? Again, I like it. If you hit the perfect draw, you aim at the bunker and draw the ball up the dogleg of the fairway. If you hit it straight, it goes into the bunker which actually might be a help to the player as deep in the woods could be worse.


Mac Plumart

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #69 on: January 31, 2011, 08:09:04 AM »
Sean Arble...

Your comments on the 8th at Sebonack make no sense.  If you play the course it is obvious what the pond is there for...all courses need some sort of irrigation.  And who cares if it is a request of the cheque signer?  If it doesn't fit, it doesn't fit.  By your logic, we give all golf courses a pass for the awful routing through neighborhoods, because the cheque signer requested a course to sell real estate?  I fundamentally disagree with that outlook 100%. 

In fact, Tom Doak has said many times he doesn't evaluate/judge architects...he evaluates courses.  And it is for this fundamental reason that I am discussing this topic that you brought up/alluded to.  We don't know what was the architects idea, the owners idea, or environmental restrictions...or whatever...on almost any course.  You've stated in the past that you try to judge how good a job the architect has done given the land he was given to work with.  I can respect this, but I can't fathom how you can put all the moving pieces, that I just mentioned, together and/or even know what are the applicable pieces in each instance.  In fact, per your previous comments it is likely that you can't either.  But in the end, all that stuff doesn't matter...the course is what the course is...regardless of whose idea it was for each and every feature.  The pond at 8 at Sebonack doesn't fit.  Plain and simple.

And in reading Tom's response, it would appear that he agrees to at least an extent.  And anyone who knows me, knows that I am not bagging on Tom at all for his work at Sebonack.  In fact, I think it is 2.5 holes from being one of the greatest courses in the world.  And even with those holes, it is still amazingly good.

But perhaps, these ideas/thoughts build to a larger point of...why would someone employ anyone of Ian's Top 10 items on this list?  Owners wants them?  Saftey?  Environmental restrictions?  And, of course, poor design by the architect could always be a potential reason as well.
Sportsman/Adventure loving golfer.

jeffwarne

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #70 on: January 31, 2011, 08:39:56 AM »
[quote author=Ian Andrew link=topic=47216.msg1053159#msg1053159 date=12964191


OT - Tom's comments about Seb's 8th is a perfect example of why its terribly difficut for the no-know guy to evaluate architecture.  Not only was the hole a request from the cheque signer, but other issues were involved as well.  



Ciao



Sean,
Aren't there thousands of courses where "other issues" and involvement by the "cheque signer" made for "mediocre" golf holes.
Do GCA fave architects get a pass when such situations are involved?
Except in this case it was always OK to rip the hole because everyone always assumed it was Nicklaus (yet it turns out Doak was the one who comes out and dispels the myth )
(just for the record, I happen to like the 8th at Sebonack,and don't see how the hazard is any different than #13 at National ,#6 at Shinnecock, or #2 at Southampton GC-except that it's actually used strategically at Sebonack as opposed to punitively-but then their architects are dead so they get a pass too)

There are ALWAYS logistical difficulties and politics involved in building a golf course-it's because of these challenges that an architect is hired in the first place.

"No-knows" are precisely who you want evaluating architecture.
You either like it or you don't.
It's the "some-knows" who cause the problem, falling in love with certain architects and aesthetic styles, which leads to groupthink and a continuation of fads. (think Arthur Hills railroad tie fans in the wake of Pete Dye in the 80's-or today's suddenly rampant frilly edged bunkers )

By the way, an excellent list by Ian.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2011, 08:46:27 AM by jeffwarne »
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Lester George

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #71 on: January 31, 2011, 09:23:19 AM »
Ian,

Good stuff and well spoken. 

I would like to sit down and discuss this list of dislikes with you in 20 years.  It would be interesting to me to see how you have avoided all of these things after about 50 more projects.  I sat down and did a list like this in about 1990.  I have really learned over the years that (especially in restoration) there are some dislikes you just have to live with.  New courses, different all together.  For example, I typically would not open with a par 5.  I was forced to do it at The Raptor course because of government regulations and I am less concerned with it now because it worked out well for that facility. 

Lets make an appointment to talk in 2030 and see if you have had the same challenges.  We could also discuss it sooner.

Lester

Kyle Harris

Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #72 on: January 31, 2011, 09:44:02 AM »
For example, I typically would not open with a par 5.  I was forced to do it at The Raptor course because of government regulations and I am less concerned with it now because it worked out well for that facility. 

Governments are regulating opening holes?

Lester George

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #73 on: January 31, 2011, 10:03:15 AM »
Kyle,

We were working on the course to repair hurricane damage from Isabel.  I was handcuffed with not moving any "feature" location from it position prior to the storm.  Moving features (tees, greens, bunkers, ponds) was looked upon as NEW work and not allowed with this funding.  I would have changed several holes and re-routed some given the chance.  In fact, I was asked to do a Master Plan which in the end some regulator said we could not accomplish with that "color" money. 

Naturally, I pushed them to the legal limit with regards to drainage, paths, irrigation, dirt etc.  For example, if we wanted to increase a green size from 4500 s.f. to 6000 s.f., we would "repair" the old one with a larger one in the same spot (as far as they knew) and shift it and the bunkering to what we wanted.  The course turned out pretty good and was the site of the Armed Forces Championships in 2010. 

Still wish I had had a little more freedom and budget because it is a really cool marsh front site. 

Lester

Ken Fry

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Re: 10 Things I Don’t Like in Design – Ian Andrew’s List
« Reply #74 on: January 31, 2011, 02:05:53 PM »

1. Containment Mounds

The architectural feature that I dislike the most is the containment mound. The containment mound is a uniform hill that rises up from the native grade with no relation to the land that surrounds. It is commonly employed to create separation between holes and to supply definition to a landing area or green site. They are particular appalling when combined to run the entire length of the hole under the pretence of creating an artificial valley. No amount of fescue can hide these bad boys.

Alister Mackenzie explained to all of us how important it was to create new features that look like existing features so that they blend back into the surroundings. The containment mound never blends back into the surroundings since its purpose is to block everything else out from view and focus the eye on the golf hole. Trees, adjacent holes the natural flow of the land and the scenery beyond the hole are all lost when containment mounds are used.

They also create technical problems since they tend to flank holes and they direct water into the centre of the hole. Since this is where the fairway is located, they often a contributor to the development of wet fairway turf and serious compaction problems. For Northerners like me they certainly contribute to ice development and damage. The common technique to deal with the technical problems created by them is to build an extensive and expensive system of catch basins and sub-surface drainage. Not only are they particularly ugly but the expense related to stripping topsoil, adding drainage systems and earthmoving is such a waste of resources.




The first time I visited Augusta National, I found there were so many characteristics you have to see in person to appreciate.  One of those were the containment mounds surrounding the 8th green.  If my memory recalls, the mounds were added to some degree, removed, added again then "restored."  Can someone who is smarter than me explain why they were put in at all?

Ken

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