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Seen this too. I have come across recycled glass for the base/drainage layer as well as a sand substitute. Of course many courses in the past skipped the sand part leaving a clay hard pan to play off. I do kind of miss this at times as there was a definite techique/art to playing a controlled shot off it.Jon
Sam Thomas from the Golf Environment Organization told me that slag was being experimented with as a replacement for gravel on golf courses when I wrote this article -- https://www.golfcoursearchitecture.net/digital/magazine/issue66/48/ -- on issues with the global supply of sand for GCA a couple of years ago.