Nicklaus Design Facts

Courses Open for Play: More than 410

Courses Designed by Jack: 300

Countries Represented: 41

Courses on Tour: 142

Championships Staged: Close to 900

  • Banyan Cay site visit
  • New ‘Nicklaus Nine’ opens at American Lake Veterans Golf Course
  • La Gorce Country Club in Miami Beach
  • Bear’s Paw restoration
  • The Club at Ibis unveils new clubhouse
  • The Club at Ibis unveils new clubhouse


  • St. Andrew
  • The Concession Overview
  • Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea-Hole 18 video flyover by Perfect Parallel
  • Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea-Hole 13 video flyover by Perfect Parallel
  • Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea-Hole 9 video flyover by Perfect Parallel
  • Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea-Hole 1 video flyover by Perfect Parallel


Nicklaus Design Step-by-Step

Nicklaus Design Step-by-Step

As the leader in the golf course design industry, with nearly 380 courses open for play in more than 36 countries worldwide, Nicklaus Design offers vast experience in creating excellence in course design that meets the varying needs of their clients. While the process varies greatly from project to project, a basic plan is followed.

The first phase in every design project is the site analysis, during which time the Nicklaus Design team carefully determines what opportunities are available at a particular site. Once the team is familiar with the site, it is important for those involved to familiarize themselves with the needs and goals of the client and project.

The critical phase of land planning begins once the Nicklaus Design team understands the client's wishes. Working together with the project owner, the team selects a location for the golf course, and a routing of the holes is created. Once this routing is completed, the Nicklaus Design team moves on to the conceptual and strategic design of the golf course. During this time the course's character, style and personality are developed, as Nicklaus Design incorporates and blends the surrounding natural environment into the eventual look and feel of the project, while creating a variety of different golf shots, angles, hole lengths and hazards.

Before the actual construction of the golf course can begin, a grading plan must be produced to detail how the soil should be moved and how the elevations will be properly created during construction, allowing players to see all of the obstacles in front of them.

Nicklaus Design Step-by-Step

The clearing plan documents how the team will preserve and work with existing vegetation, or, when required, what areas need to be partially cleared to make room for site work. Once complete, the clearing plan makes way for Nicklaus Design to bring in an agronomist that can consult on the climate, soils, water quality and other issues used in determining what varieties of grasses should be utilized during construction.

The final element in the plan is to use the grading to produce grassing plans while working with an engineer to best create the needed drainage and irrigation on the golf course.


Step No. 1 - Pre Construction

Project Analysis » Site Analysis » Preliminary Routing Plan » Final Routing Plan » Permitting and Approval Process » Plan Production » Consultants [Irrigation Consultant, Agronomist, Project Engineer] » Contractor Bidding » Material Selection


Step No. 2 - Clearing

Surveying » Site Preparation » Phase One » Clearing » Phase Two Clearing » Selective Clearing » Grubbing


Step No. 3 - Mass Excavation

Soil Engineering » Topsoil Stripping » Earthwork (Typical Site) | Earthwork (Rock Site) | Earthwork (High Water Table) » Surveying


Step No. 4 - Rough Shaping

Selection of Shaper(s) » Surveying » Large Scale Shaping » Detail Feature Shaping


Step No. 5 - Drainage

Drainage Engineer » Storm Drainage » Feature Drainage » Compaction and Clean Up


Step No. 6 - Irrigation

Irrigation Plan » Pump Station Installation » Irrigation Layout » Irrigation Installation » Clean Up


Step No. 7 - Feature Construction

Lakes » Bunkers » Tees » Greens » Cart Path


Step No. 8 - Finish Shaping

Fairway Drainage » Capping » Fairways and Rough » Greens » Tees » Bunkers


Step No. 9 - Grassing

Tree Planting » Seed Bed Preparation » Grassing » Landscape


Step No. 10 - Grow In

Fertility & Disease Control » Erosion Control » Mowing & Grooming » Final Clean Up


Step No. 11 - Grand Opening


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Nicklaus Design has over 410 courses open for play in 45 countries with another 57 under development.


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With eight offices in six countries across three continents, Nicklaus Design has local representation for any project.