Planning will begin this year, including property-wide assessments, aerial survey and photo archive research, and a review of past projects. A key aspect of the initial work is to understand how the course was originally laid out, and how it has evolved over time. “The course has undergone several renovations over the years, and it’s time to modernize the golf course components while also highlighting the historical features,” says Director of Agronomy Kenton Brunson, who will work closely with architect Andy Staples.
Andy Staples, owner and principal architect of Staples Golf Design, is set to begin work on a strategic plan to upgrade Phoenix (Ariz.) Country Club. Originally built in 1899, then moved to its current location in 1921, Phoenix Country Club boasts a long tournament history, and a celebrated golf course designed by Harry Collis of Chicago.
“I’m beyond excited about working with this historic property,” says Scottsdale-based Andy Staples, Owner of Staples Golf Design. “Phoenix Country Club is the preeminent club in the Valley and is one of only a handful of courses that possess some really unique design history, and interesting design lineage. The construction of this golf course in line with a period of time of some of the greatest courses ever to be built.”
Master planning will begin this year, including property-wide assessments, aerial survey and photo archive research, and a review of past projects. A key aspect of the initial work is to understand how the course was originally laid out, and how it has evolved over time.
To see the plan through, Staples will partner with the club’s Director of Agronomy, Kenton Brunson, along with key club officials in researching, planning, and proposing solutions for the significant areas in need of attention. In the end, the team’s plan will improve daily conditions, restore specific features of years past, accommodate families with kids and beginners, and focus on long-term sustainability.
“The timing of this project is perfect for our growing membership, and needed in a big way,” Brunson said. “The course has undergone several renovations over the years, and it’s time to modernize the golf course components while also highlighting the historical features. Andy has outlined some forward-thinking ideas to show us what’s possible.”
The club is in the process of planning for important capital improvement projects, which will include upgrades to the putting green infrastructure, irrigation system, bunker upgrades, overall teeing ground assessment, and sustainable turf choices. Plans will also investigate an upgrade of the practice facility to coincide with the recent technology advancements.
Phoenix Country Club was home of the Phoenix Open from 1932 to 1986, and has played host to the Charles Schwab Cup Championship, the season finale of the PGA TOUR Champions.
“Having lived in the Valley now for almost 20 years, it’s exciting to be working with one of the most historic clubs in the State,” Staples said. “I envision a property that will showcase traditional, old-world Phoenix and intend to reimagine the course’s strategy and sustainability. There’s no reason why this place can’t be known as one of the best, most authentic designs that exist in the United States.”