Pinehurst tabs Gil Hanse to redesign No. 4, build a fun new short course as part of a master plan

Pinehurst Resort & Country Club is excited to announce that Hanse Golf Design will redesign Pinehurst No. 4 and build a short course as part of a master plan to further restore the original character and spirit to the Pinehurst golf experience.

Beginning this winter and unfolding in several stages over the next few years, the plan also includes restoring Donald Ross’ original characteristics to Pinehurst No. 1 and No. 3 while enhancing Maniac Hill and Thistle Dhu.

“There’s a unique character at Pinehurst because of the landscape Donald Ross found when he arrived in 1900. Back then, he may have been a minimalist by necessity, but we’re making a choice to present our historic golf courses in a natural state similar to that era.” -Bob Dedman, Pinehurst Owner

“There’s a unique character at Pinehurst because of the landscape Donald Ross found when he arrived in 1900,” says Bob Dedman, Pinehurst Owner and CEO.  “Back then, he may have been a minimalist by necessity, but we’re making a choice to present our historic golf courses in a natural state similar to that era.”

“The overwhelmingly positive feedback we received from the work on No. 2 encouraged us to explore options that are a continuation of that effort,” Dedman added. “We think this is a thoughtful approach to the evolution of golf at Pinehurst, and we think Gil Hanse, with his timeless and natural design philosophy, is the right person for the project.”

What will Hanse’s design of No. 4 include?

Hanse’s design and routing, which seeks to create a landscape reminiscent of Pinehurst No. 2, will include exposed sand and native wire grass, wider fairways, natural topography and ultradwarf bermuda greens. Says Hanse: “We think this approach will create a more authentic, visually interesting golf course and one that feels in tune with its unique surrounds.”

When will the project begin?

The No. 4 project is scheduled to begin in fall 2017 with the course reopening fall 2018.

Why Gil Hanse?

Hanse’s skill and expertise are evident in his work, which includes restoration projects at The Country Club, LA Country Club, Merion Golf Club and Oakland Hills Country Club and the original design work of The Olympic Golf Course in Brazil. We believe Hanse has an ability to accentuate a site’s natural land forms and an intuitive sense of how a traditional course should fit a piece of land that was one of Donald Ross’ favorite sites.

What is the short course concept?

Hanse is currently developing a routing for the course that is expected to have 8-to-12 holes and feature slopes and contours similar to No. 2 that create multiple options and inspire creative play. Our belief is that golfers of all ages and abilities will enjoy the short course.

Where will the short course be?

The short course will be routed on the 10 acres of property currently occupied by the first holes on No. 3 and No. 5.

When will the short course project open?

The project is scheduled to begin in summer 2017 with the course opening fall 2017.

What will happen to the routing of No. 3 and No. 5?

Beginning this December, we will close No. 3 and begin to make some changes to several holes.  We intend to reopen No. 3 this spring playing as a par 68 course.  The current 2nd hole of No. 3 will be reversed and become the first hole of No. 5.

What changes will be made to No. 1 and No. 3?

No. 1 and No. 3 will eventually undergo restoration work designed to return elements of Ross’s original designs.

What enhancements are coming to Thistle Dhu?

Due to Thistle Dhu’s popularity and the work planned for No. 4, we plan to expand and relocate the putting course closer to the clubhouse.

What enhancements are coming to Maniac Hill?

We are planning to incorporate more native characteristics into Maniac Hill, which will allow the range to fit more naturally with the surroundings of No. 2 and the redesigned No. 4.

What else is on the horizon?

Originally, we considered converting No. 4’s greens to ultradwarf bermuda in 2017. However, with the planned redesign, we now plan to convert No. 7’s greens to bermuda in the summer of 2017.

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