Robbins Golf Design enhances greens at Iowa course

Robbins Golf Design enhances greens at Iowa course

Work on The Vale Nine at Echo Valley Country Club restores surface area to original design.

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December 18, 2018
GCI Staff
Robbins Golf Design announced the completion of work for the renovation of the greens on The Vale Nine at Echo Valley Country Club in Des Moines, Iowa. Echo Valley is a 27-hole layout built as an 18-hole course in the early 1960s. In 2004, Robbins Golf Design completed the addition of the third 9 holes, called The Ridge Nine to go with the Creek and Vale nines. In 2011, Robbins completed extensive renovation work on the Vale nine, but the greens were not touched in that project.
 
Over the years since the original construction, the putting surfaces have become much smaller as the outer edges began to creep inward. Prior to the recent renovation, the greens had become so small that it was becoming difficult to maintain them and pin placements were limited. As the greens became smaller, the greenside bunkers became more removed from the ability to influence play and course strategy. The renovation program included restoring the surface area to near the original design, removal of the top 4 inches of existing mix and replacement with new mix while duplicating the original green’s contours. Many potential high shot value pin placement locations were created or restored.
 
In addition to resurfacing the Vale greens, a new 21,000 square foot putting green, three chipping greens and a short-game practice center have been built. After some mowing pattern and landscaping changes to the driving range are completed, the practice facilities at Echo Valley will be among the best in the region. Members will now be able to practice every shot they may face on the course from almost any type of lie.
 
Due to a late summer start on the program and weather delays, the greens have not been seeded and will be covered until spring. Wadsworth Construction performed the renovation work on this phase of the project as they did for the earlier renovation of the Vale 9 and the addition of the Ridge 9. The newly renovated Vale Nine and practice facilities should be ready to open by early summer of 2019.
 
In addition to work at Echo Valley, Robbins Golf Design has also been selected to provide long-range master planning services for Pine Valley Country Club in Wilmington, N.C.  Pine Valley is located near the heart of downtown Wilmington and was built in 1955. It is an 18-hole facility with swimming and tennis amenities.
 
The master planning for Pine Valley will involve all aspects of the property, including the clubhouse, golf course, practice facilities, swim and tennis facilities.  Because of the architectural and interior design component of the master plan, Robbins will work with Chambers Architecture of Baltimore, Md. Chambers is a respected multi-disciplined design firm specializing in golf clubhouse design and renovations. It is expected that the complete planning and renovation work will be done over a five-year period or more depending on the scope of work to be determined by the master plan.