Golf Solutions, owners and managers of the 54-hole Wigwam Resort west of Phoenix, Arizona have begun restoration work on the famous Gold Course and portions of the Blue Course. Using aerial images from the 1960s, when Robert Trent Jones, Sr. completed his transformation of the property from 18-holes to 36-holes, golf course architect Forrest Richardson is leading the effort.
“We will reclaim bunkers and green shapes of Mr. Jones,” says Richardson. “Edging and mechanical raking have all but eradicated the spirit that Trent put into the details of the Wigwam – our job is to put back what he had in place when he left here.”
Richardson is no stranger to the Wigwam. He played high school golf matches at the facility during the 1970s and worked with the late, Arthur Jack Snyder who was the first modern age architect to work at the Wigwam. In the early 1960s Snyder took the old Goodyear Farms from 9-holes to 18-holes. Later, Trent Jones, Sr. was asked to expand the golf to 36-holes. “Mr. Jones and Mr. Snyder were friends,” notes Richardson. “Jack was always pleased that Trent used many of his holes in the expanded routing. On the Gold Course today, Holes 1-7 and 17 and 18 are basically Jack’s. Trent, of course, remodeled them and added his signature touches in bunkering and those long, runway tees.”
Landscapes Unlimited was selected for the work which continues through September. The scope includes complete restoration of bunkers, green shapes and lake edges. Additionally, a new practice area will be created out of portions of the Blue Course. Holes will be rerouted in portions of the Blue Course to accommodate the new practice area. Forrest Richardson’s associate, Patrick Burton, has created a 20,000 s.f. putting venue to be called the “Village Green.” This feature will anchor the new practice facility and will house a bar, fire pits and lighted walkways.