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The first question is typically “why renovate”?  So often the answer is agronomic related.  Examples are poor turf quality on greens, tees, or fairway surfaces.  Trees can overpower a golf course.  Drainage problems, especially in heavy soils, can take holes or parts of holes out of play for long periods of time after rain events.  Irrigation systems become worn and obsolete, especially after fifteen to twenty years of use.  Cart paths deteriorate.

Billy Fuller is hands on throughout the process, from the first day of planning to the grand opening.  His goal is not to see how many projects have his name, but rather to ensure the highest quality possible for each project with his name as Architect of Record.

Once a club or owner identifies such infrastructure/foundation problems, the next prominent issue becomes the question of course design.  If certain key features (i.e. greens, tees, bunkers, etc.) require rebuilding, this is the logical time to evaluate the strategic quality of the design. This leads to interviewing various qualified architects and ultimately choosing one to lead the design program. Regardless, once we are chosen to work as Architect of Record, there is a very structured sequence of events that occurs to develop a Golf Course Master Plan.  Please note that Billy Fuller is hands on throughout the process, from the first day of planning to the grand opening.  His goal is not to see how many projects have his name, but rather to ensure the highest quality possible for each project with his name as Architect of Record.

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  1. Establish a Base Map:  The Owner provides a topographical map, preferably two-foot contour intervals, with accurate property boundaries, and a color aerial at one-inch equals 200 feet. scale  We use this to build a Base Map to develop a Strategy Plan over existing conditions.

  2. Course Tours & Roundtable Discussions:  Typically, the club has a committee comprised of members and staff who are involved in the course evaluation process.  We make several course tours, noting all concerns expressed by the committee and developing new design concepts.  We encourage the committee to include a diverse group of members/players in roundtable discussions, which offers us an opportunity to hear concerns from various levels of players.  

  3. Strategy Plan:  The plan evolves throughout the process of course tours and discussions. In some instances, it is more about preservation, in others, restoration, and still others, developing a completely new design strategy and motif. We never force anything on an owner, but rather work to understand the marketing and economic strategies and long-term goals for the course.

  4. Hole-by-Hole Narrative:  Once the Strategy Plan is in place, we develop a written narrative describing the new strategy for each hole.  The narrative includes key points about the course history and a description of the new design motif.

  5. Scope of Work & Cost Analysis:  With a plan and narrative in place, we can develop a scope of work and estimate costs.  Estimated volumes and sizes are applied to all features. These estimates become absolute once we develop the construction drawings for the bid package.  

  6. Schedule: The schedule is dictated by the grow-in window.  Every turf variety has its ideal time to germinate, grow and mature. We must develop a start date that allows construction of each feature to be complete in time for the growing season.

  7. Power Point Presentation:  With the above items complete and blessings of the committee, we assemble and present a Power Point Presentation of the Master Plan program with before and after graphic displays of each hole along with a narrative, estimates, and scheduling.  

  8. Once the Master Plan presentation has been made, and assuming we get a positive vote to move forward with the renovation, we then move into Phase Two of Design.


Golf Course Bid Package:  Working Drawings such as Strategy Plan, Contour Plans, Greens Plans, Clearing Plan, Erosion Control Plan (by others), Irrigation Plans (by others), Grassing Plan, Bid for Contract & Scope of Work, Technical Specifications, General Conditions, and AIA Contract 


Pre-Bid Conference:  Qualified golf course contractors approved by the owner and designer are invited to attend a pre-bid conference at the golf course to review Golf Documents and the site.


Construction / Design Approval:  Once a contractor is hired, we (the designer) are on site weekly to make all design approvals and review construction specifications.  We produce Site Visit Notes for each course tour describing all design approvals and instructions for the contractor.​

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  1. Grow-in:  Unlike many other design programs, Billy Fuller continues to make site visits through the all-important grow-in, sharing programs from years of experience with the on-site golf course superintendent.  Billy experienced five grow-ins as a golf course superintendent and well over one hundred as a consultant.

  2. Grand Opening & Beyond:  We enjoy staying involved with our projects through annual design reviews if the club approves



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