Lobb & Partners
golf course architects

Google Earth is a free software package which allows users to very satellite images from around the world.

Prior to Google Earth our industry used to have to rely on expensive aerial photographs to get such images. Often our clients were not in a position for such an expense and they were rarely available.

Now with modern technology and this incredible software we can view existing golf courses from around the world and also look at new territories for potential golf courses. Within our office we subscribe to Google Earth Pro, which has a cost to it, but it give us more flexibility and allows us to export images to CAD and scale them up for manipulation for future design exercises.

Having the digital image in scale gives us great power to measure various elements and really educate ourselves on the golf course that we are studying or review design elements that we might have read in books but never┬áseen in real life. For instance – i wonder how far that bunker is to carry on a certain hole? Or i wonder what the positioning of those bunkers at Cypress Point look like in plan? I have never been to Cypress Point before unfortunately but now with Google Earth I could educate myself on the layout and strategic value of individual holes.

When we start work on a new course design one of the first things we do is look to Google Earth and see what is what. So much can be seen from the satellite image including natural drainage patterns for the terrain and significant landscape formations.

Our industry owes alot to Google Earth in my view. It is a great tool to present our designs but also it is a great tool to educate ourselves to produce better golfing facilities.

I wonder what is next for the future. If they can work out a way to put existing contours on Google Earth then that would be incredible.

Lets see what happens with that.

Thoughts of Tim Lobb – 23 March 2011.

WRITTEN ON March 23rd, 2011 BY Tim AND STORED IN Philosophy, Tim Lobb

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