Site Visits Trump Technology, Argues Faldo Design Director

There’s no substitute for site visits for golf course design teams, says Mark Adams.

Singapore: Technology will never be able to fully compensate for the inability of golf course design teams to get ‘down and dirty’ on site visits, according to a respected industry veteran.

Mark Adams, former Head of Golf Course Services at IMG and now Director at Faldo Design, acknowledges the benefits that technological advancements have offered during the imposition of travel restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, it has also served to underscore the importance of site visits.

“In the golf course design business, there really is no substitute for being on site, especially during construction,” said Adams, speaking during the latest podcast in an Asian Golf Industry Federation series interviewing prominent individuals in the golf industry and broadcast at

He said: “In the short term I think we’re going to see a continuation of the last few months, where we’re going to have to be able to provide our services, both in terms of design and construction supervision, without making site visits … and that’s a big challenge.

“At design stage it’s a little bit easier to do it remotely, but there’s really no substitute for our design guys to get out there and get in the dirt and look at bunkers and look at greens, really see things that are happening on the ground.

“Short term we’re going to have to rely on video calls and photos. Longer term, I think what these past few months are teaching us is that it’s going to be even more important to get key, qualified personnel on the site. You’re going to need to have good construction management people and good shapers.

“At some of our projects, we’re able to put a guy on site. We may have to consider someone with a Faldo Design hat being based full-time on a site.

“There are some things happening technology-wise, whether it’s digital mapping or different video technologies, that can be used. Those are the sort of things I guess that these past few months are teaching us and things that we’re going to have to consider.

“But I’m very hopeful that in the not so distant future – people are saying that will be when there’s a vaccine – we’re going to be able to get back out there.”

*To listen to the full interview with Mark Adams, please visit

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