Thursday, March 22, 2012

St. Martins Restoration

Below are photos of our recent restoration to PCC's original, 9-hole, St. Martins course (which dates back to the 1800's). This restoration was performed with golf course architect,Keith Foster in an in-house method using PCC's staff.

It is wonderful for our members to have this work completed prior to our Wissahickon Restoration. It will also be extra special for our members to have their original US Open course restored prior to the US Open returning to Philadelphia next year!

As we excavated the bunkers, the original perimeters from the 1800's became clearly evident (notice the interior edge of the bunker in the photo). The combination of over 100 years of sand build-up on the faces from bunker shots, and gradual edging, caused the bunkers to eventually become more rounded and bland in shape. As this happened the bunkers gradually became more sand-flashd as the original grass faces were slowly lost. Discovering these origianl features, and restoring their concepts made for very special, heart-felt work.

In order for the St. Martins course work to be executed, it needed to be done in a creative, cost effective manner. The below photo shows that after we lowered fore-ground, the existing sod was re-placed.

#2 complete!

Our staff was so passionate about the work that not even a moderate snowfall slowed us down.

#1 bunker installed with Matrix mix and ready for sand. Also notice how our first green has been expaned over 40%; back to its origianl shape.

#5 roughed out.

#5 ready for sand.

#5 beginning to be buttoned-up.

The green expansions were executed in the most cost-effective manner possible. The process included: 1. Stripping the rough areas where the green would be expanded 2. Aerifying the green multiple times and dragging the aerification cores into the stripped ares. 3. Smoothing and rolling the areas 4. Lightly seeding the areas with bentgrass.
Using aerification cores from each green allows the expansion areas to perfectly match each green's existing surface. Outside of using our existing labor force, the work was virtually cost-free!
Note: With Wissahickon being one of our championship courses, it's greens will be completely rebuilt to have optimum sand-based drainage and to allow for slight green-slope softening.

Notice the poor surface drainage on our old practice green.

The practice green being re-shaped.

Our practice green afterwards. The first tee is back on its original line, and in an old-school method, it is incorporated into our practice green. Also notice how our surface drainage is much improved on the right side as surrounding water is now diverted away from the green.

The view of #9 green with our square green corners restored!

Celebrating a job well done with golf course architect, Keith Foster, club leadership, and our staff! Many thank to PCC members, and we hope you enjoy your new/old St. Martins!