hillcrest golf course
The Hillcrest Golf Course in Durango, Colorado sits on top of a scenic mesa which overlooks the town in the four-corners area of Southwest Colorado. Conditions at Hillcrest had declined over the past forty years and, although the club had installed a new irrigation system in 2009, none of the other elements had been updated since the back nine was built in the 1970s. The Course undertook a major renovation directed at improving playability and increasing play.
In 2011, the Club retained Norby to complete a Long Range Master Plan study geared primarily towards increasing revenue. That study included a complete assessment of the course as well as a detailed review of the Club’s fee structure, management and marketing. Working with Golf Strategist James Keegan of Golf Convergence, Norby recommended a change in the fee structure and a modest renovation of the golf course. The study concluded that the primary issues were safety, the condition of the bunkers and the impact which mature trees were having on playability and the condition of the golf course. The Club raised their season pass rate and implemented a tiered pricing strategy, punch cards and a key-charge for each golfer. As a result, revenues jumped dramatically which allowed the Club to accelerate their capital improvement schedule.
In 2014, the Club moved forward with the first phase of improvements including removal of nearly 150 trees, a complete bunker renovation and the repositioning and reconstruction of tees. In the process, the regrading of tees and bunkers allowed the club to address some of the safety and drainage issues as well. The most significant improvement came from removing trees which allowed for wider landing areas and improved views to the surrounding mountains. According to Jack Morrison, Board member and project liaison for the Club, the reaction from golfers has been very positive and we’ve already seen improvements to turf quality and pace of play.
Herfort Norby was responsible for all aspects of the project including preparation of construction plans and specifications, bidding, construction observation and project administration.