PGA TOUR Design and Construction Services
- Written by: Molly Shaw
- Produced by: Caitlin Mugford
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
PGA TOUR Design and Construction Services (D&C) is changing the game of comprehensive golf course design and project management. Based in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. – one of the most distinguished golf areas in the world – D&C has established itself as a trusted consultant and industry-leading adviser to all things related to golf facility planning, design and construction.
“What goes into a golf course is a lot more than meets the eye,” explains Jim Triola, COO of D&C. “It’s much more than the green grass and fairways, but a very intricate system of drainage, irrigation and soil compilation. We work closely with operations teams and agronomists to ensure that all systems are working properly.”
According to Triola, the game of golf has changed over the years. “Players hit differently and the reaction of the ball has progressed, so we help clients make sure their facilities are conducive to these changes,” he continues.
Growing with the Game
When D&C began in the late 1980s, the company started with basic construction services. “We were born in the 1980s and began getting involved with the Tournament Players Clubs [TPCs], a network of golf courses operated by a subsidiary of the PGA TOUR,” notes Triola. “We started with construction services and then forged our way into the design aspect.”
The result was two divisions – PGA TOUR Construction Services Inc. and PGA TOUR Design Services Inc. – both with the same objectives in mind: expert consultation and project management.
“We formed the two companies to provide consultation on the horizontal and vertical design side and provide expert management on the construction side to make sure developers had the product in mind that was correct for the application and which satisfied the objectives of TPCs: to be quality venues for professional golf events,” details Triola. “That was the genesis of our organization.”
As the golf industry matured and evolved, D&C itself evolved. The company transitioned from new construction and design services to significant renovation projects at TPCs and to advising owners of existing non-TPCs regarding golf course enhancements to make suitable for hosting the best golfers in the world.
“As the golf industry has changed and as the economic realities of past development activities here come to roost, there’s not as much new construction in the United States,” explains Triola. “We’re doing more and more work with respect to golf courses that are not TPCs to assist ownership in readying them to host events on the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour and Web.com Tour.”
D&C has also branched out into several continents worldwide, sought out by clients for its expertise. “Our headquarters remain in Florida, but we are involved in projects dispersed throughout the world, from Rio de Janeiro to Korea,” shares Triola. “We’ve done work in Canada, China and throughout the U.S.”
Readying Rio de Janeiro
Working closely with architects and owners, D&C has landed one of its most significant undertakings to-date: the stage for golf’s return to the Olympic Games in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro. “We’re consulting with the local developer, as well as the International Golf Federation [IGF], on the new golf course in Rio,” reveals Triola. “This is the first time golf will be in the Olympics since 1904.”
However, Triola acknowledges that there are obstacles to overcome. “Golf course development in this area, as in many other locations around the world, is not as advanced and sophisticated as in the United States and Europe,” he explains. “We’re working with the development group, clubhouse architects, the IGF and the local organizing group to make a good showing. It’s especially important to make this project successful because in 2017, the International Olympic Committee will evaluate if golf will remain a part of the Olympics beyond 2020.”
The pressure is on as D&C strives to provide the expertise to the developer so that it can produce a high quality competitive venue and a golf facility that will live on as a legacy of the Olympic Games. “Meanwhile, the city is readying for the 2014 World Cup soccer match, so that adds congestion and confusion to the already busy area,” adds Triola.
Built to Suit
Aside from Olympic endeavors, D&C has traveled to Korea as the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Inchon readies itself to host The Presidents Cup 2015. “We’ve also recently overseen the renovation of TPC Potomac at Avenel Farms just outside of Washington, D.C., and provided design consultation and project management at the 36-hole TPC San Antonio,” details Triola. “We have also managed significant renovation work at our flagship TPC Sawgrass, home of THE PLAYERS Championship here in Ponte Vedra Beach.”
The company is also currently in the midst of working with the city of Scottsdale on a major infrastructure improvement at TPC Scottsdale in Arizona, which is the host of the PGA TOUR’s Waste Management Phoenix Open. These improvements are intended to keep the facility viable as a PGA TOUR tournament host site for the next 20 years or more. “Every TPC facility needs to be capable of hosting a professional golf event,” Triola continues. “That is a core brand promise of every TPC.”
D&C has also worked with the Trump Organization on its recently completed renovation at the Doral Resort in Miami. “From a design perspective we consulted with the Trump Organization and architect Gil Hanse on renovation of the historic Blue Monster course,” Triola says. “The Blue Monster at Doral hosts the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship.”
From the Olympics to a luxury venue, D&C has been doing its part to ensure that golf courses are designed and built to the highest standards for decades, and the team continues to satisfy the needs of ownership today. PGA TOUR Design and Construction Services goes above and beyond with comprehensive design and construction-related services, exceeding expectations and putting its imprint on iconic golf facilities.
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