Shaftesbury Glen and The West Course at The Pearl to Launch Course Enhancement Projects

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by Chris King

Shaftesbury Glen

Story by Chris King

Shaftesbury Glen and the West Course at The Pearl are closing this summer to launch course enhancement projects that will have both layouts in peak condition in the fall.

Shaftesbury will be undergoing more extensive work, replacing its bentgrass greens with Sunday Bermuda as part of a larger renovation project. The Clyde Johnston design closes on June 17 and plans to reopen August 7. Change at Shaftesbury won’t be confined to the layout’s elevated putting surfaces. Building on work that began several years ago, Shaftesbury is adding another 250,000 square feet of waste bunkers to the course. The sand will tighten fairways, but the low profile bunkers won’t be difficult to play from and the visual contrast will significantly enhance the course’s look. The bunker work will also benefit golfers in ways that aren’t as obvious to the eye. “The waste bunkers work for us in three different ways,” said Ryan McCarty, Shaftesbury’s general manager. “They improve drainage, golfers are able to drive around the course better, and they provide the course with a different visual appeal that it never had before. Golfers loved (the 2016 renovations) and it changed the feel of the course.” Shaftesbury also added 250,000 square feet of waste bunkers in 2016.

While the new greens and waste bunkers garner all the attention, Shaftesbury is also using the time to install a new chipping area and putting green at its practice facility, part of a two-year plan that will significantly enhance the property. The South Carolina Golf Center currently fronts the driving range but the building will be converted into a pub that will be ready to serve golfers in the fall of 2020. The pub will include covered hitting bays and target greens, allowing players to continue the fun long after their round ends.

Pearl’s West Course is also transitioning away from bentgrass greens and will be installing MiniVerde Bermuda this summer. The Dan Maples design closed on June 1 and is slated to reopen August 15. The course also plans to make irrigation and drainage repairs while it’s closed. The decision of both courses to convert to Bermuda grass is hardly surprising. The new ultradwarf strains of Bermuda thrive in South Carolina’s sup-tropical climate, unlike bentgrass which is best suited for a cooler environment. As the new ultradwarf grasses have improved, providing a putting surface that is comparable to bentgrass, courses have migrated en masse. While Shaftesbury and Pearl’s West Course were the first to close for news greens this summer, stand by for news about summer worked planned for one of Myrtle Beach’s most popular courses.The Pearl West Course

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Shaftesbury Glen

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