Global Edition

Casablanca Course Central to Urban Development

9.50am 10th November 2010 - Course Development

Taken in early September 2010 showing the golf course development with the turf nursery visible top centre.

The construction phase is drawing to a close on Jeremy Pern’s most recent project, Casa Green Town, on the outskirts of Casablanca, Morocco. Earthworks and shaping began in May 2009 and by the end of October 2010 over a quarter of the course has been sprigged. Everything will be grassed by next July and the course will be on track for a soft opening in the back end of 2011.

The golf course is the central green space of a 400 hectare urban development including a hospital, university, commercial and business park, shopping centre, extensive recreational facilities and housing for over 30,000 people.

“I was remarkably fortunate to have a client who appreciated the idea of a core golf course, and instead of endless bungalow lined fairways crammed into each other, we have a spacious18 hole golf course spread over 90 hectares. It’s what I call a big sky site – from the club house terrace you can see 15 greens.

“Using recycled sewage water and drainage run off from the whole development site, stored in 7 hectares of lakes, we managed to have enough ‘free’ water to irrigate over 40 hectares of grass plus the landscape planting. I decided to use Platinum, a recently developed variety of paspalum and I am happy with the results so far. I have found it to be a seriously aggressive beast with remarkably little water and fertilizer requirements and most impressively our harvesting rates from the turf nursery have been almost double our original predictions. I hope that next year we will be just as impressed.”

Casablanca has over 4 million inhabitants and the course is targeted at local golfers rather than tourists. This will be Casa’s first 18 hole championship course. The developer, Rabat based company CGI is well known in Morocco as a government backed provider of  prestige developments of all kinds. On Jeremy’s recommendations CGI have recently appointed St Andrew’s based Braemar Golf to manage the Golf Course.

Says Pern: “We have worked together in Croatia and I felt that Braemar’s youthful and exuberant hands-on approach was what was best suited to the local context. The stuffy elitist days of golf club management are really no longer relevant today. Morocco has a refreshingly pragmatic approach to its golf development strategy, unlike the golf scene some other arid locations where ostentatious vulgarity seems still to be the order of the day.”

Jeremy Pern

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