Regulars at the city of Dallas’ L.B. Houston Golf Course were “amazed” at the changes when it re-opened as Luna Vista this fall after a renovation by John Colligan and Trey Kemp of Colligan Design in Arlington.
“Everyone who sees it for the first time cannot believe it is the
same course,” said golf professional Mickey Piersall, happy with the way the project turned out.
The transformation included newly sculptured fairways with 419 Bermuda and greens with Min-Verde, white sand in the bunkers plus landscape improvements that included more than 300 additional trees and multiple ornamental grasses
Colligan believes the course will be more player friendly as the contours of the fairways were sculptured to collect shots instead of rejecting them. The approaches were changed to allow the ball to run up on the greens. Tightly mowed areas around the greens will provide more chipping opportunities, especially for the higher handicappers, who miss more greens. Some forced carries were also eliminated. An additional dozen bunkers, strategically placed, will add to the challenge.
While Colligan admitted that a few extra yards were tacked on to the back tees to stretch it to 6,847 yards, most players will find it is player friendly from the whites at 6,309, the yellows at 5,801 and the reds at 5,249.
The routing remained basically the same except the new Nos. 3 and 4 were changed. No. 3 is now a long par-3 with a creek and a deep bunker to the left of the green while No. 4 is a par-4 with a lake on the right. One of the chief reasons for this change was to eliminate a potential dangerous situation where long hitters used to cut the dogleg on No. 3 and go right over the fourth green.
The redesign was a moving experience for Colligan, who noted Elm Ford, the original name back in 1969, was where his father introduced him to the game.”The project holds sentimental value for me as it does for many others who started playing here. I am very excited with the final product.”
Piersall and Colligan both feel the new teaching and practice facility will be among the best in the Metroplex. The driving range features tees on both end with a simulated fairway and target greens. The putting green was enlarged and another additional green and bunker was added for short game practice.
Not to be overlooked, the clubhouse was given a total face lift, including the additional of a deck on the back.