2018 Architecture Awards

Build 2018 Architecture Awards 92 or over thirty years, Golf Optimum has been committed to an environmentally-responsible approach in order to reconcile the economic requirements of golf courses with the maintenance of biodiversity in courses. Golf Course Architect Michel Niedbala develops new ideas by joining up necessities and needs to develop projects that innovate, in the areas described above, and also in terms of reasoned economic approaches. For Michel, any course he creates must be designed to play harmoniously with nature, movement, architecture and engineering. All of these factors give his projects lasting success. Today, Michel and his team firmly believe that golf courses are developing towards a much closer relationship with the natural and geographical surroundings, the environment and collective and individual memories, and playing a part in the changes to creation in the new millennium. From the time a golf course is designed, laid out and throughout its life, clear goals are identified with partners and authorities in order to conserve the ecosystem of the project site and restore or even create and develop spaces that are favourable to the fauna and flora. During the preparatory and design phase the firm undertakes site exploration, environmental impact studies and all applications for permission. Then, laying out is managed in parallel with the gradual restoration of areas. Finally, during the operating phase the golf course is adapted as widely as possible to support biodiversity, by maintaining the wetlands created, controlling invasive species, managing and monitoring ecological inventories etc. As a result of this innovative process Golf Optimum goes well beyond the legal requirements applicable to the creation and operating of golf courses, investing time in research to develop ever more advanced know-how to list animal and plant species and understand and control the working of ecosystems. Thus, procedures for conserving the natural environment are fine- tuned and improved over the years, along with good practices for each project phase, making it possible to not merely conserve species, but also enhancing biodiversity as has been observed in many a case. After all, the failure of industrial practices has driven us to promote an ecosystem that accumulates organic material to replace a mineralised ecosystem that loses organic matter till the soil becomes barren. As such, in order to state its commitment to sustainability and changing the golf course creation market for the better Golf Optimum has created the ECO-BIO-GOLF ® mark, which is designed to change mentalities and practices. The basic principle is to restore balanced ecobiosystems with each project, by looping up the biological cycles of nitrogen and carbon. Put simply, the team understand the need to draw on the original ecosystem, and move from deserts to forests when designing new golf courses, as well as exploring the effects that their work will have in the long term on the landscape and ecosystem. Soil is at the interface between the earth’s crust and the biosphere, and contains the largest mass of living beings in land areas and also the greatest biodiversity. Golf Optimum’s approach is comprehensive, and consists in protecting resources, providing renewable services, the principle of zero waste, reducing irrigation needs, limiting weed removal, nurturing the creatures that live in the soil, and offering shelter to those that limit pests and disease. Recycling the soil by using organic conditioners that feed the soil and the fauna it harbours makes it possible to increase the energy stored Recognised Leaders in Golf Architecture & Design 2018 Golf Optimum is a French golf course design and architecture specialist which has created some of the greatest courses in the world. We profile the firm to learn more about the incredible spaces it designs which bring joy to golfers internationally. F AR180042 Company: Golf Optimum Contact: Michel Niedbala Address: 26/12 rue de la Noyera, Villefontaine, Isere, 38090, France Phone: 0033 672 9080 93 Website: www.golfoptimum.fr

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