the preliminary phase of any project, we begin by establishing design
parameters for the irrigation system. This can include establishing the
areas of the course to be irrigated; determining the specific treatment
of greens, tees, and the interfaces of turfgrass and landscape or native
areas; and identifying the source and location of water and power for
If the project is to be supplied with recycled water (reclaimed effluent), we consider the potential need for a separate greens watering system. Our firm has been involved with projects using recycled water for over twenty years, and we have considerable experience in the proper design and specification of irrigation systems of this type.
In preparing plans for the new irrigation system, we first develop a base sheet that includes the golf course features and all details that are critical to the irrigation design.
For new golf course construction, we use the golf course designer's plans to develop this base sheet. We also use the grading plans to determine the hydraulic requirements of the site.
For existing golf course projects, we recommend using a current aerial photograph to produce the base sheet for our plans. Prior to beginning the design, we utilize this aerial photograph and any available topographic information to conduct a detailed site study. This site study allows us to establish design parameters for the new system and to note any areas of the golf course that require special treatment.
In order to determine water requirements for any project, we research the historical evapotranspiration (ET) and rainfall data for the site. In areas of the world where historical ET is unavailable, we use local climatic data such as temperature and rainfall and a mathematical analysis of that data to develop projected ET values. From this information, we produce a Basic Hydraulic Analysis to determine peak water use on a daily and annual basis and the required rate of flow to supply the irrigation system.
Based on our analysis of topographic information, we determine pressure requirements at the various elevations on the site. We use these pressure and flow requirements to establish the water source criteria for the system and to determine any necessary pumping requirements for the project.
Based on the irrigation requirements of the golf course and the best-recommended sprinkler spacing, we produce a Preliminary Plan including sprinkler layout and pipe routing. From this Preliminary Plan, we produce a detailed cost estimate for the proposed irrigation system. This Preliminary Cost Estimate is based on current costs of material and labor and is derived from a spreadsheet program that we have developed based on our experience on over five hundred projects.