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HJJ003

Memorial Park Renovation by Tom Doak (Future Home of Houston Open)

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<p>Pending approval by Houston City Council next month, phase one of the proposed two-phase project will begin in January and last 10 months.</p>

http://www.friedegg.co/golf-courses/doak-redesign-memorial-park

I am beyond excited for this. Memorial Park is best municipal course in the area by far, and is one of my to three favorite courses in the Houston area (maybe even number one). It is a staple in this city, but could use some re-vamping. I am also a pretty huge fan of Tom Doak and his course designs (which is kinda funny cause I have not had the chance to play one yet lol), and have been following his podcasts and articles on The Fried Egg for awhile now. Very excited to have him renovate a course that is so special to me and this city. 

My Hopes: 

- I like the idea of bringing the ravines more into play on the back nine (mentioned in the articles). Some great holes back there, but not a lot of elevation change save for maybe the tee shot on 14 which is one of my favorites. 

- The par 3's need to stand out more (with exception of #15 which is the signature hole and a gem IMO). #2 is a wedge or short iron into a fairly begin green (albeit not very large), #7 has a forced carry and a large greenside bunker but just isn't very interesting, #11 is a long boring par 3 currently my least favorite hole on the course)

- I think just a tad more (not overdoing it) fairway bunkering would make the design a bit more strategic in nature. The traditional green side bunkering is pretty good on most holes I think. 

- More tee Box options. I can almost assure you Doak will do this. I will be disappointed if he doesn't. 

Overall, I know this is a renovation, and not a complete re-design but I think there are some design changes that will be needed to make the course more challenging and appealing to the Tour pros in 2020 and beyond, while also being playable and challenging to the average golfer. Course should re-open in 2019 (October) and I plan on doing whateverI can to play it the first month or two it opens. 

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I'm happy to see Memorial getting another upgrade.
I used to play it quite a bit when I lived in Houston, starting back when you had to get there early Friday morning for the draw for a weekend tee time.
Glad they can bring the event back, and back inside the loop. I was fun watching the celebs & seniors play there a few times in the Doug Sanders event, before it moved to Kingwood.

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Astros owner Jim Crane's plan to renovate the Memorial Park golf course to host the PGA Tour's Houston Open was delayed Tuesday as several council members questioned whether the city should receive a larger share of an...

The vote has been delayed a week as some city council members want the city to take a bigger cut of the tournament fees to assist in upkeep of other city parks. 

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1 hour ago, HJJ003 said:
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Astros owner Jim Crane's plan to renovate the Memorial Park golf course to host the PGA Tour's Houston Open was delayed Tuesday as several council members questioned whether the city should receive a larger share of an...

The vote has been delayed a week as some city council members want the city to take a bigger cut of the tournament fees to assist in upkeep of other city parks. 

What some of these city commissions don't realize is that delaying a project like this one week, two weeks, three weeks… can sometimes result in the project basically being delayed a full year.

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10 minutes ago, iacas said:

What some of these city commissions don't realize is that delaying a project like this one week, two weeks, three weeks… can sometimes result in the project basically being delayed a full year.

Yup. it sounds like what the few council members that are causing the delay are asking for is unlikely to happen...so I think another delay could be a death sentence for the 2020 Houston Open coming back inside the loop. 

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1 hour ago, HJJ003 said:

Yup. it sounds like what the few council members that are causing the delay are asking for is unlikely to happen...so I think another delay could be a death sentence for the 2020 Houston Open coming back inside the loop. 

It's a shame when politics get in the way of progress...

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?url=https%3A%2F%2Fgolfadvisor.brightspo

When it comes to golf, the city of Houston might have hit the jackpot.

Some pretty cool details on the changes that Doak has planned for the course. Changing number #9 from a par 4 to a par 3 is huge. The green site is awesome, but I was never a fan of the tee shot. 

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This article first appeared in the April 2019 issue of Golf Course Architecture. For a printed subscription or free digital edition, please visit our subscriptions page. Tom Doak is working on a...

I am excited about a more exiting finish. Both for the tournament, and more importantly for my many rounds at Memorial Park 🙂 

I am really looking forward to seeing the ravines exposed and playing a larger role in the strategy of the golf course. 

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Some new update videos coming once I can figure out why they won't embed!

 

Edited by HJJ003

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Here we are! #12 has changed dramatically from what it originally liked like. The green has shifted and a significant about of trees have been cleared around the green. The hole will now play as a very long Par 4 (491 from tips, likely somewhere around 420 or 430 from the tees I would play)

Here is a cool video talking about the expansion of the irrigation pond between #16 and #17. More than tripled in size.

"If we were going to have water in play we might as well put it in the players faces" Tom Doak on the fried egg podcast

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The second edition of the hole of the week features the 13th hole....a drivable par 4! This hole was one of my favorites on the back nine because of the view of Williams tower in the background. It appears they have maintained the view, and created more interest in a hole that was previously a par 5. Interesting choice going with no hazards on this hole, it will be interesting to see the scoring average during the tournament. 

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Here is the latest two editions of the hole of the week. Both of these holes will be part of what is an exciting finish to the round for the Houston Open, and a challenging (yet playable) finish for the the everyday golfer (yay me). #17 has water all down the right and a challenging approach shot, but will probably be tough as nails for most everyday players with typical Houston winds. Looks  like you can bailout left though. The spectator view from here will be outstanding. #15 was the signature hole for the course officially, and it looks like they have taken the pond out and instead have a small stream in play. The shaved edges will make left pin positions a real challenge in the tournament. The bailout is long or right, but both look to be quite challenging up and downs from there. I like short Par 3s that still make you focus on needing a really solid shot. 

Interesting move having Butch Harmon be the host here. I wouldn't have thought it, but oh well he is a recognized name in the industry so makes sense I guess. 

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Now this is cool. Some of the other holes were already interesting and Doak made them even more so. This was a dull long par 3. Still long, but the green shape is vastly different and it appears there will be a good deal of movement at least in the right half of the green. Going to be a hybrid for me most likely. 

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Geez this is the sixth straight week of these "holes of the week" and they haven't shown one hole in the front! Must still be doing a bit of brush cutting and earth moving on that side. Oh well. This hole is interesting. Previously it had two fairway bunkers and two green side bunkers. It now has only one fairway bunker (which the fairway feeds to) and one green side bunker (I like the look of that one). The feature that puzzles me a bit on this is the "clamshell" feature they refer to. It seems a bit out of place, but who knows maybe looks much better once everything is grown in. It will aid in pushing players towards the bunker. I think this feature came about because Koepka told Doak that odd stances were the best way to get in the heads of  tour players. It will be interesting to play, and watch the pros play for sure. 

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