Tiger named lead designer for Chicago course


In December at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods spoke of the second phase of his career, a life beyond winning major championships and the grind of competition.

One of those outlets will be designing golf courses, and now Woods has expanded his portfolio to include the restoration of a pair of historic Chicago courses.

Woods will be the lead designer in the restoration of Jackson Park and South Shore, two South Side municipal staples that date back more than a century.

“This can change the community forever,” NBC Sports/Golf Channel analyst Mark Rolfing told GolfChannel.com. “It could be a model for sustainable urban golf. If people watch this unfold with Tiger involved it’s going to generate interest from everyone.”

Rolfing will lead the newly formed Chicago Golf Parks Alliance, which will oversee improvements to all of the district courses and youth programs. The restoration is expected to cost $30 million, which Rolfing said would come from private donations.

The project calls for a championship course and either a short course or par-3 course to be completed by 2020.

The Western Golf Association will also partner with the new parks alliance to promote caddie programs and prepare the championship course to possibly host the PGA Tour's BMW Championship in 2021.

“All of the planning is being done with that [hosting the BMW Championship] in mind,” Rolfing said. “The beauty is all the infrastructure would be right next door. It’s going to be an opportunity to have Chicago be a host of an event, they are usually held in the suburbs.”

According to Rolfing, President Barack Obama called Woods in August regarding the project and encouraged him to get involved. Obama’s Presidential Center will be constructed in Jackson Park not far from the golf course.