We don’t often post about general news from the golf world. The recent updates about the Cobbs Creek restoration project make for a deserving exception.
On January 19th the City of Philadelphia announced a Construction Plan and Lease Agreement and $65 million in investment in the project from the Cobbs Creek Foundation. That’s the first big news since the course closed for play in October 2020. Local news covered the story in many places. Here are a couple articles from 6abc and WHYY, and here’s the press release by the City.
And now, the Cobbs Creek Foundation has put up some more details on the project. They have a great web site going with lots of information about everything from the history of the course to details on the restoration. It’s really exciting in many ways. Check out the routing. The first 5 holes follow the same routing compared to when the course closed. The vitally important stream restoration itself will change how Holes 3, 4, and 5 will play. Earlier versions of the master plan had #3 looking like an island green and it’s not clear if 5 fairway is going to stay on the left of the creek or move to the right. So we will have to wait and see what the architects finally decide on these holes.
Then we come to 6. Walk off 5 green to about where 6 tee is now. Get your driver out for this par 4, turn 90 degrees to your right, and hit it UP the hill to what had been the 16th green. That’s how it was in 1916. Really interesting!
After that lots of the re-routing happens in the north corner of the property, near the city line driving range and batting cages. The recent 12 and 13 become 7 and 8. The par 5 14th is replaced with a par 4 and a par 3. You have to like that. Other than being long the 14th didn’t have much to offer. Then the uphill 15th becomes 11. 12 is a “new” downhill par 3 taking you back down to where 6 green is now. 13 is a par 5, basically replacing 7 and 8. The final 5 holes are all existing. 9, 10 and 11 become 14, 15, and 16. Then you step over to the existing 17th tee to finish your last two holes. They’ll have to do what they can to make 18 longer. After all, the goal is to host a PGA event.
Good luck to all!
And then there’s Paxon
Not to be outdone…. Wait, no, actually you are being outdone. But this is still good.
Paxon Hollow has announced an Improvement Project as well. Holes 1 and 2 are being replaced with two news holes, and the third hole will be shortened to a par 4. Looks like 1 and 2 swap locations with the existing but very short driving range. That allows for a full scale driving range and a better opening par 4 to the right of it. The existing first hole was certainly fun but became overwhelmed by the latest club and ball technology, so this is a nice move. Work to begin this year, they say.
Let’s just make this a course renovation blog. We are waiting on news from Turtle Creek. There is a project on the table in Limerick township that would convert the swampy area left of hole 8 into condos. It’s called Ironwood. Really creative work there, guys. Bushwood was already taken. It looks like the new development would wipe out the 8th hole which would be a shame. That’s the best hole on the front nine.
The development was moving forward at a township meeting back in September. Evan Brant at the Times Herald reported, “A plan to build 90 townhomes on 15.6 acres carved out of unused acreage at the Turtle Creek Golf Course moved one step closer to passage Tuesday night.”
But if you look at the site plans they definitely encroach on the 8th green and fairway. They will have to relocate the hole the way the plan is currently presented.