Global Edition

2021 ASGCA survey reflects industry optimism and changes

2.27pm 8th January 2021 - Management Topics

ASGCA members continue to see growth in projects focused on practice area improvements, re-bunkering, short game area development and master planning projects. That is one result of the 4th “Golf Facility Market Trend Watch” report, commissioned by the American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA) and conducted by Sports & Leisure Research Group (SLRG).

The online study, conducted and analysed in late 2020, was distributed to more than 40,000 people, including ASGCA members, and subscribers of By Design and Golf Course Industry magazines. Respondents included golf course architects, superintendents, general managers, facility owners/operators, golf professionals and industry leaders.

The complete Market Trend Watch results may be found at

“COVID-19 had a unique impact on the golf industry, as 85% of superintendents reported a surge in play during 2020, a far different result than most other industries experienced,” said Jon Last, SLRG founder and president. “The pandemic’s impact is seen throughout these results, including more than 7-in-10 facilities saying their bottom line was impacted by new or updated regulatory issues.”

ASGCA members are engaged in a breadth of projects large and small. Nearly one-in-four are working now or have recently completed re-design or renovation projects of at least nine holes, and a similar percentage are working on new course design. Re-bunkering projects continue apace across North America, and master planning is as strong as ever.

The study also illustrates a surge in golf activity in 2020 has led to an increased need for on-course maintenance programs at both public and private courses, according to golf course superintendents and general managers.

Operators at both public and private facilities show a willingness to invest capital if it will improve the overall financial picture. The goal to “Increase Revenue” outpaced “Decrease Costs” by more than 5-to-1.


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