January 2017 Golf Course Architecture Magazine, Issue 47 – Pinehurst Resort & Country Club in North Carolina, USA, has appointed Gil Hanse’s design firm to carry out restoration work on Pinehurst No. 4 and build a new short course.
Speaking to GCA, Hanse said that he aims to maximise the natural advantages of Pinehurst No. 4 and place the course on the site in as natural a condition as he can.
The commission follows the successful transformation of Pinehurst No. 2 in 2011, when Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw restored the course back to Donald Ross’s original design. Hanse has said that he will be “borrowing heavily from the look and feel of No. 2, which Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw so artfully returned to the spirit and philosophy of Donald Ross.”
Hanse and his team will be looking at early photos of the Pinehurst courses, in particular the early photos of No. 4, to gain inspiration.
“The original footprint for Course 4 is no longer in existence, so we will not be able to replicate holes, but we hope to draw concepts from the original Ross plans and early aerial photos,” he said.
Planning is already underway and construction is expected to start next autumn. “Our goal will be to have the course completely planted by August of 2018 with an opening sometime in 2019,” said Hanse.
Hanse’s firm will also design a new short course at Pinehurst, which should be ready for play by autumn 2017. The course is expected to have 8 to 12 holes and will sit on 10 acres of property currently occupied by the first holes on No. 3 and No. 5. As a result, further changes will be made to several holes on courses No. 3 and No. 5.