Table of Contents Table of Contents
Previous Page  9 / 16 Next Page
Show Menu
Previous Page 9 / 16 Next Page
Page Background



he City of Los Angeles was

selected to host the Special

Olympics World Games, to be

held in August 2015. The golf events

would take place at the city’s Wilson

and Harding municipal courses in

Griffith Park, classic era designs by

George C. Thomas.

Neither course was compliant with

accessibility guidelines set out by

the Americans with Disabilities Act

(ADA). Cart path access to tees and

greens had been compromised by

decades of additions that involved

curbs, walls and stairs.

In order to get ready for the Special

Olympics, the host city needed a

solution to rectify the access issues

and, at the same time, build forward

tees to allow yardage to be more

flexible and meet the criteria of the

Special Olympics golf format.

Complicating the assignment was a

limited budget and minimal cart path

coverage—more than six miles of new

paths would be required.

Forrest Richardson, ASGCA,

developed a master plan for both golf

courses, with a focus on preparation

for the Special Olympics. In preparing

the master plan, care was essential to

preserve the classic design features of

the courses, making additions appear

as if they were part of the original

intent and design.

Goals established to guide the

work included: conforming to ADA

accessibility guidelines; constructing

new paths to work with existing paths

and routing them out of distant views

where possible; constructing new tees

to appear as original; attaining a forward

yardage length of approximately 5,000

yards at each course.

The project saw paths added to 31

golf holes, 68 existing tees re-leveled

or rebuilt, and 28 new forward tees


Photos: courtesy of City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks


Los Angeles, California

Golf course architect:

Forrest Richardson, ASGCA,

Forrest Richardson & Associates

Project summary:

In preparation for the

2015 Special Olympics World Games,

the golf courses at Griffith Park in Los

Angeles needed to be updated to

meet event requirements and conform

to standards for accessibility, while

preserving their classic design features.


City of Los Angeles (James

Ward, David Takata, Bob Davis);

American Landscape (construction);

Mark Fine, Design Associate

Griffith Park GC

Access for all

LA course upgraded for Special Olympics