Driving ranges are popular among golfers of all levels. Building a range involves acquiring or leasing enough land to develop the actual range as well as a parking area and small structure to service visitors. A driving range provides a great alternative to a full round of golf as they take a lot less time and money to enjoy. Ranges appeal to all ages and are popular throughout the year, weather permitting.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Golf balls
- Golf clubs
- Ball-retrieving system or machine
- Cash register
Draw a diagram of the driving range layout. Include distances and measurements so you can calculate and acquire land of appropriate size. Make sure it can accommodate golfers who can hit the ball more than 350 yards.
Consult an architect or designer if you need expertise. Experience is a great asset in building a driving range. Experts will make sure you have thought of little things like irrigation or landscaping.
Find land or an area where you can build your driving range. Lease or purchase the land. An area in the range of 15 to 25 acres should be enough.
Research any zoning issues that might affect your land. If you want to make your driving range a commercial business, you will need the appropriate zoning.
Develop a plan to retrieve balls. Buy or lease a ball-retrieving machine that can be driven on the range. This is the most efficient method.
Prepare land for building the range. Make sure the land is level. Work with a landscaper to address any sodding or watering needs.
Water the grass regularly. Make sure it's rooted well and can support the machines that will retrieve golf balls.
Build the tee-off area. Divide the area into 15-30 equal smaller square areas that will be individual tee-off stations. Provide the necessary components such as a turf mat and soft plastic tee so golfers can drive balls from each station.
Add a tarp or build a cover for the area so golfers can use it during poor weather. You will want to offer service even when it's raining.
Buy or build a shed or hutlike structure where you can organise and sell balls. Make sure you have a cash register.
Put up nets on both sides of the range and at the very back of the range. This will keep all balls on your property and ensure that no one gets hit by a stray ball.
Plant distance markers, in yards, throughout the range. Make sure they are easily visible from the tee-off area. Markers can be in increments of 25, 50 or 100 yards.
Buy enough balls so that you never run out. Quality is less important than quantity. Base your calculation on the range being used to maximum capacity.
Build an area where visitors can park their vehicles. Make this as close to the range as possible because visitors will often bring their own golf clubs.
Market your business appropriately. Consider radio and Internet advertising that can be locally targeted. Offer discounts to attract new customers.
Tips and warnings
- Check your nets regularly for holes and make the necessary repairs.
- Build the tee-off area so that it is elevated from the driving area as this is the standard design.
- Have extra sets of clubs for rent in case visitors don't bring their own.
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