Episode 26: Kyle Franz Part 2
The first project Kyle Franz ever worked on was Tom Doak’s masterpiece, Pacific Dunes, a course now recognized as one of the best in the world. That fortuitous turn launched his design/build career where he amassed one of the business’s strongest pedigrees shaping courses for Bill Coore, Tim Liddy, Gil Hanse and others. His big solo break came with the commission to re-establish the original Donald Ross character of Mid-Pines near Pinehurst, NC, and later to its sister property, Pine Needles, which will host the U.S. Women’s Open for the third time in 2022. The runaway success of these renovations and his work at other places, especially Seth Raynor’s gorgeous Lowcountry design at the Country Club of Charleston (host of the 2019 U.S. Women’s Open), Minikahda Club in Minneapolis and even the Kohr Golf Practice Facility, has allowed Franz to become one of the first architects of his generation to achieve design independence.
In part 2 (part 1 here), Derek and Kyle pick up their discussion about the leap forward represented by Sand Hills and Pacific Dunes, how those two courses are not alike, Tom Doak as Orson Welles, reversible architecture, bunkering down in the wilds of Rio to build Gil Hanse’s Olympic Course, finding his own vision and voice, taking artistic risks in design, the future of ground-game architecture and whether or not there’s one more great course to be built in the Nebraska sand hills.