The $6 million project will produce a complete redesign of the historic Donald Ross golf course, with construction beginning in April and reopening for play in October. The semi-private facility’s updated golf course will add 700 yards to the previous course, and will play to a par of 70 with five par threes and three par fives.
Fort Myers (Fla.) Country Club will undergo a total rebuild of its Donald Ross-designed historic 1917 golf course in April, led by Florida-based architect Steve Smyers.
Construction of the new course will start in April. The $6 million project will be completed and the course reopened for play in October. It will remain a semi-private facility.
“The focus of the project is to design a new golf course—this isn’t a restoration or renovation—as if Ross were approaching the site today, mindful of modern playing equipment, maintenance equipment and practices, turf grasses and environmental concerns,” Smyers said.
Ross’ original Fort Myers course was roughly 6,300 yards long, while the new Smyers-designed course will be 7,000 yards, playing to a par of 70, with five par threes and three par fives.
“The goal is to satisfy the current customer base, but also make FMCC more attractive and challenging to younger, more accomplished golfers,” said Smyers. “The new FMCC is being designed to be the area’s ‘go to’ site for various USGA qualifying events, as well as to accommodate state and regional amateur events. As it has done since 1963, FMCC will continue to be the home to the annual Coors Light Open, site of two-time US Open Champion Lee Janzen’s first professional victory.”
“We are working closely with USGA Green Section agronomists to build a course that demonstrates the highest standards of environmental stewardship,” said Smyers. “Long-term water demands are being minimized through the use of native upland grasses and the induction of indigenous wetland vegetation.”