Architect Profile: Kyle Franz
Kyle grew up in central western Oregon and became interested in course design at an early age. He studied turfgrass at Oregon State University where he got his hands dirty on a project only a few hours down the road that would eventually become one of the world’s best courses: Tom Doak’s Pacific Dunes. After Pacific Dunes, Franz has worked on some of the most exciting new builds this century, including Barnbougle Dunes in Australia, the Olympic course in Brazil, as well as the Dunes course at Prairie Club and Streamsong Black in the United States. But, it was the restoration work at Pinehurst No. 2 under Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw in 2012 that might have been his big break.
Franz has worked on some of the most exciting new builds this century, including Pacific Dunes, the Olympic Course at Rio, and Barnbougle Dunes
Kelly Miller, the owner of Mid Pines and Pine Needles only a few miles down the road from Pinehurst, was keeping a close eye on the restoration of famed No.2. After its success and seeing Franz’s vision for a similar restoration at Mid Pines, Miller offered Franz a job. His work was a universal success, winning Golf Magazine’s 2013 Best U.S. Resort Renovation award and landing the course into the Golfweek Top 100 Classic rankings for the first time.
Ever since the success at Mid Pines, Franz has kept busy heading up other restoration projects, including nearby Southern Pines as well as the top-ranked Eastward Ho in Massachusetts and The Minikahda Club in Minnesota. Franz also restored the Country Club of Charleston before the 2019 U.S. Women’s Open and Pine Needles before last year’s U.S. Women’s Open. While he’s made a name for himself as a restoration specialist, Franz has some exciting new build/redesign projects in the works, including Cabot Citrus Farms outside of Tampa, FL and Broomsedge outside of Columbia, SC.
Projects: 33 (9 new builds, 24 renovations)
Top Ranked Courses (New Builds): Barnbougle Dunes, Pacific Dunes, Rio Olympic GC, Stone Eagle, Prairie Club (Dunes)
Top Ranked Courses (Renovations): Pinehurst No. 2, California GC of San Francisco, Eastward Ho, Pasatiempo, Quaker Ridge
Major Events*: 2014 U.S. Open – Men’s and Women’s (Pinehurst No. 2), 2016 Summer Olympics (Rio Olympic Course), 2018 Curtis Cup (Quaker Ridge), 2019 U.S. Women’s Open (CC of Charleston), 2019 U.S. Amateur (Pinehurst No. 2), 2022 U.S. Women’s Open (Pine Needles),
Note: Role refers to Kyle Franz’s role on the project
In the heat map above, the size of the circle is determined by the number of courses that Franz has worked on in a particular area and the color of the circle is determined by the accessibility of those courses. The greener the circle, the more public courses there are in that particular state. North Carolina (6) offers the most courses that Franz has worked on, followed by Massachusetts (4) and California (4). But North Carolina has a much higher percentage of public courses!
The Pinehurst region would be the best to visit to see the most Franz courses. He’s worked on Pinehurst No.2, Pinehurst No.3, Mid Pines, Pine Needles, and Southern Pines. It’s no surprise that Franz calls Pinehurst home!
If you have access to private golf, the most concentrated region of Franz’s courses is Cape Cod. Eastward Ho, Vineyard Club, Wianno Club, and Woods Hole are all located there.
The Gold Age of Pinehurst – The Story of the Rebirth of No.2 by Lee Pace
Open Links Website
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