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2023 U.S. Open Going To Los Angeles Country Club?

Potentially historic news--pending a member vote and signed contract--but it appears the USGA would like to bring the first United States Open to the Los Angeles area since Ben Hogan's 1948 win at Riviera.

Here is my story at working off of an LA Times report by Mike James revealing that an email has gone out to all Los Angeles Country Club members notifying them of an upcoming vote.

And of course--full disclosure--I worked with architect Gil Hanse on the 2010 restoration of the North Course.

The North Course most recently hosted the 2013 Pac 12 Championship won by California and Max Homa. You can see photos of that event here and here.

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Reader Comments (36)

Would be great !
Come on baby, come to LA! Can't wait to see the course for the Walker Cup in 2017 and first in line for 2023!
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterReGripped
course is way too easy for a US Open. USGA will no doubt be adding new tees etc...
08.28.2014 | Unregistered Commentergolfboy

They added a bunch of new tees and can get the course to 7400 par 70. There is a tee on the practice putting green for #1, #2 is now a long par 4, new tee on 7 can play 285, 8 added 10-15 yards , 10 added 15-20 yards, 11 added 30 yards plays 275, 14 added yards with lack of tee definition, 16 added 20 yards and 18 added 50-75 yards. The first major hurdle is going to be the membership, I would be curious to see the letter. Does it indicate how much the club would be reimbursed for all the damage that would occur to the south course for parking and corporate tents on holes 1,2,17,18? Does it indicate how long members will not be able to play each course?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterLA Player
One of my personal Top Five, LACC will be a great Open site. As long as they don't bastardize the architecture to protect par.
08.28.2014 | Unregistered Commentertlavin
Whole lotta shakin between now and 2023.
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterJerry Lee
Does the USGA have projections for what average driving distance will be in nine years time?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterJosh
Means 2024 will be back east...
Might see Casey Wasserman's and a son working the blue coats!
Josh, you must have missed the memo from the USGA, they are convinced that driving distance has already peaked and has leveled off the last few years. You believe that don't you?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Does anyone have any inside scoop on how the members would vote?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
@Josh, You must have missed the USGA memo. Driving distance has peaked and is now leveling off. Nothing to worry about. You believe that don't you?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Geoff is inching closer to that blue blazer I know he covets so much!

As a bonus, we might hear less about California not getting any love from the majors! …ahem, I said "might".

(And said tongue in cheek, as a transplanted Midwesterner who doesn't want to hear complaints about USGA "fllyovers" of anybody's hometown region.)
Geoff, does this mean you will be inviting all of your readers to play the course prior to the Open?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterAdam S
Will they be able to see the ball through all that smog?
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterHarris Telemacher
I really don't think LACC is concerned about the potential costs. Not a membership list with a lot of "budget" minded people. The members may not care to lose access to the courses for any amount if time though. For the members sake, if the proposal includes any offspring of Robert Trent Jones or some guy named Fazio coming to add bunkers and generally make the course miserable for the members to play, decline.
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKG
Congrats Geoff on your role in all of this and in helping see Thomas and Bell's design resurrected. Next stop, Griffith Park.
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterDavidC
I doubt the members will be concerned about costs, that's a very healthy membership. But losing access to the course could be an issue.
iMHO, if the USGA wants to bring in one of the Jones' or Fazio to toughen the course, run away! The members will enjoy the course much less after it's been bunkered to death. Rarely is a classic course "better" for the members after the USGA has finished with it.
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKG
Architecturally, I would like to congratulate Gil Hanse, Jim Wagner & Geoff Shackelford for giving Captain Thomas his due in the restorative efforts at The Los Angeles Country Club. For those that haven't seen it, now, you will finally get a glimpse at this most charming property that has been returned to that rolling meadow-like feel, filled with all sorts of natural hazards, creeks beds, native trees and removal of evil Pines which had been planted over the years and inundated the property.

The place will grab you!
08.28.2014 | Unregistered CommenterTommy Naccarato
The USGA will have to trick LACC up like they did at Merion. What a shame...such a splendid course since the redo.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterJersey Boy
That is a grand idea. But, there just seems to be such a long stretch of time between now and 2023, that one can't help but think that a lot of things could still happen in between. Or, they could just as easily want to give ample time to improve the course some more to make it a good challenge for the players. Also, this doesn't seem to be set in stone yet, so we'll see.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterJames Schiller
The blue coats love 6:40EDT 3rd/4th round final tee times.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKevin
Great news, wish it was sooner.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterOB
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterGCT Jr.
This thing is going to be a logistcal nightmare from a traffic standpoint. I wonder if the scribes who pissed and moaned about Kiawah before a shot had even been struck will be equally venomous about the miserable LA traffic conditions?
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterJeremy

Not a problem, distance stopped growing 10 years ago!

Serously, I think 275 yard par 3's should work, that and long rough.

I think it is a brilliant move on the club's part. Might as well become part of the world of golf and for that matter the rest of the community.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterLynn S.
2023? We were talking about going to the lake that weekend...
08.29.2014 | Unregistered Commenterd
Love the course, play it often. Big props to Gil ang Geoff on the redo. That said, I can't see this working for a few reasons.
1) A full remodel is scheduled for the South Course in the coming years. I can't imagine they would allow parking there, not to mention it's very hilly and not suited for parking or corporate tents, etc.
2) The extremely dense traffic problems that already exist in this area.
3) No room for the corpo stuff
4) No parking
I do think the course can handle it from a strategic challenge point of view
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterP-Dog
Would parking be at UCLA as the school will be on summer break? Seems like parking would be the biggest issue.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterAndy
George Thomas quote today - nicely played.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterMike T.
My question is this: if the California drought continues unabated and the watering of golf courses becomes -- A) a sin B) outlawed -- then how will LACC appear for the tournament? Will we see another "dry and natural" replay of Pinehurst from back in 2014. (Of course, the same question can be asked of Torrey Pines when it stages the US Open in 2021.)

I can just hear Donald Trump now: "Los Angeles Country Club looks terrible!"
08.29.2014 | Unregistered Commenterbenseattle
Geoff, What are the chances of the internet speed being a little better at the media hotel in LA than at Pinehurst?
08.29.2014 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
I am pulling for 2025 at Merion 75 years since Hogan came back.
08.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterPABoy
I actually think parking will be the least of their worries. At Torrey Pines, they didn't use the North course for parking and instead shuttled everyone in from off-site parking structures and stadiums. LA has plenty of that available within 15 miles of the course. Staples Center/LA Convention Center, UCLA, USC, The old VA which they currently use for the tournament at Riviera, and if they're really desparate they could use Dodger Stadium. Most of those venues could get you to the course in about half an hour including the load time and traffic.

Hopefully by then the current funneling of public funds to politically connected contractors and friends a politicians/405 expansions will be done and traffic will be able to move at the pace of a slow jog instead of the current crawl.
08.30.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKRope
It is just great right now after renovation. It will be even fantastic-er with 20-24 yard wide ribbons of fairways with the bunkers out in the rough ala Bethpage Black.

Please vote no.
09.2.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBillV
Ahh. Thank God for Hanse, Wagner and Shackelford. What a grand work, bringing the North course back to its glory days and likely a US Open and a Walker Cup. This team must be so proud to have been entrusted to do this Seminole work. I walked the course back in the early 80's, having poured over George Thomas' book "Golf Architecture in America". What I saw was so sad, despite the clubs prestige, because the original vision he had created was lost. I only walked nine holes. I had been saddened by the bland bunkering and lack of strategic value since restored. Can't wait to see it I person in 2017, although online it looked absolutely mahvelous.

If you've never been to a Walker Cup, it may not get any more pure than that; as a fan to see golf played by many of the games best amateurs, ardent fans, and much camaraderie within the crowd, along with a closing ceremony that can, and should make many a grown man or woman tear up with pride and patriotism. Merion, was something to witness, few years back. The crowd was pretty large, and after the competition the euros singing songs, Ryder Cup style was worth making the pilgrimage alone. If you truly love golf, see a Walker Cup at a venue like the restored LACC North Course.

Now why on Gods green earth would anyone suspect that the USGA would want or need or even consider, honestly, that Jones (Rees or RTJ ll) let alone Fazio (love his work), would be called in to make the North course Open ready? Seriously? This team of Hanse, Wagner and Shack... they are the new standard, that has brought back the old standard, to it's full glory, with provisions for todays length standards. The Walker Cup will be used to experiment, in preparation for 2023, and adjustments like width of fairways, speed of greens, firmness or fluffiness of sand traps, .... will all be adjusted accordingly. No one else needs be brought in. Really. Really?
08.8.2015 | Unregistered CommenterBirdman

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