The fantastic photo of the original #4 posted by Ian Andrew inspired me to start this thread. With the golfing eyes of the world on Rochester this year, it seems like the ideal time to bring the idea to the fore.
It's hard to put into words what this place means to me. I'm sure there's others that feel the same way..
I spent a lot of the pandemic laid up with a back injury and dreaming of golf, including this project. Given the successes of similar projects in similar sized cities (Hartford/Keney Park, Richmond/Belmont, Charleston/Muni, etc) I have to think this can be done at a reasonable cost and scale, and with great benefit to the community. No- I KNOW this can be done with the right help from the right people.
The drawings here are my representation of either a) photo evidence of what existed in the 1930's or b) what I imagine was there based on either descriptions or ground contours, with a little bit of creative license for the current state of affairs while trying to stay in his style.
One thing that stood out to me in research was the similarities between a lot of the holes and traditional templates. This makes sense viewed in the lens that RTJ had just completed a tour of Scotland. Of course he would use the holes he liked! For example, #6 is a Double Plateau green- a small, extreme version, but one nonetheless. #9 is a Cape hole. #12 is an Eden with the bunkers restored. #14 is similar to a Leven, etc.#1
Prior to 1995, the opening hole played as a 490 yard par 5. There was little trouble anywhere, but a fantastic little green which subtly runs away towards the lake. Now it's a 390 yard par 4 with the same green, leaving the typical player with a mid iron into a green that slopes away. There is a lot of unused real estate surrounding the fairway which could be repurposed. This is one of the few holes where I propose a fairly radical change, cutting down the line of trees by the chipping green and moving the tee 40 yards right. This opens up the possibility of a short flight range and a Himalayas-style putting course, along with a snack/bar hut hopefully creating a community feel. The fairway bunkers (church pews probably a bit over the top
are intended to frame the tee shot and subtly push the player right, away from the ideal line into this green- which I propose dropping about 3-5' so the hills behind create a punchbowl effect and a much friendlier start for the player.