Creating Chambers Bay Championship Golf Course
GeoEngineers helps turn a century-old gravel mine into the site of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship
Chambers Bay golf course at sunset
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Site of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship, the Scottish Links themed design of Chambers Bay golf course has made it a bustling recreation area beloved by both local residents and tourists. (Photo by Martin Miller)
Expertise
  • Geologic
  • Geotechnical

Market
  • Development
  • Water & Natural Resources

Location
  • Pierce County, WA

Overview

Chambers Bay golf course, site of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship, is the anchor of Pierce County’s 930-acre reclamation and economic development plan for Chambers Creek Regional Park, a historic waterfront location with a long history of industrial use as a gravel mine. The nationally recognized redevelopment plan balanced the county’s multiple needs at the site for public access, a waste water treatment plant and revenue generation, while capitalizing on the site’s breathtaking location at the edge of Puget Sound.

Approach

Our work at Chambers Bay began 14 years ago as part of the Environmental Impact Statement team. In addition to completing the “Earth” section of the project Environmental Impact Statement, we have helped Pierce County turn the industrial site into a flourishing recreational area through the following work:

  • Evaluated  the stability of a 200-foot bluff below a 1.25-mile walking path with sweeping views of Chambers Bay golf course and Puget Sound
  • Provided geotechnical design  for the Environmental Services Building that overlooks the park and is available for public meetings and special events
  • Evaluated storm water infiltration ponds and trench areas as part of the golf course design team to ensure that the golf course remains dry at all times, fitting with the Scottish Links theme of the course design
  • Sampled surface water and sediment in accordance with Chamber Bay’s Natural Resources Management Plan to show the course was using the minimal amount of fertilizer needed to protect the surrounding environment
  • Provided geotechnical design recommendations for a pedestrian railroad overpass connecting the park to a public beach.
  • Provided geotechnical design parameters of temporary grandstands for the 2015 U.S. Open Championships

Community


GeoEngineers regularly engages with Pierce County and the United States Golf Association regarding Chambers Bay. Members of our staff were on-course volunteers for the 2010 U.S. Amateur Championship and will be again for the 2015 U.S. Open. Our staff, on behalf of The First Tee, an international youth development organization, has worked with Pierce County and Kemper Sports to host two fundraising tournaments.

Results

Today Chambers Creek Regional Park is a bustling recreation area beloved by both local residents and tourists, and home to successful businesses.  Audubon International has designated Chambers Bay golf course as a Certified Silver Audubon Signature Sanctuary based on the results of our surface water and sediment testing. The golf course is also the first in the Pacific Northwest to be chosen for the U.S. Open Championship.