Grounds for Greatness
Golf at Cobbs Creek
The shining gem of Cobbs Creek is an expertly crafted 18-hole masterpiece that’s accessible and welcoming to all.
Discover the storied legacy of this historic course, and our plans for the next chapter.
Since its inception in 1916, Cobbs Creek Golf Course has been a haven for people of all backgrounds and skill levels. The course, designed by the Philadelphia School of Architecture, has acted as a welcoming, inclusive place for all. Men and women could always test their skills against this best-in-class course, whether new to the game or a seasoned vet.
Golf Association of Philadelphia (GAP) President Robert Lesley appointed a committee of expert golfers that included Hugh Wilson, George Crump, and Ab Smith to work with city officials to build the golf course. Multiple designs were drawn and by January 1915 the city approved the final design and work commenced.
Cobbs Creek officially opens. It was soon generally acknowledged as the best public course in the country.
Cobbs Creek hosts USGA Public links championship.
Cobbs Creek hosts United Golfers Association (UGA).
Cobbs Creek hosts the Daily News Opens.
15% of the property was annexed by a military entity for an anti-aircraft battery during the early years of the Cold War. This loss of acreage created a need to significantly re-route the golf course, adversely affecting a third of the holes, most of them among the most renowned and dramatic on the golf course.
Present: A Great Need
Over the next 60 years, the creek began to overflow, greens were washed away, fairways were destroyed, and the historic clubhouse was lost to a fire. Which is what brings us here today.
Cobbs Creek Golf Course is subjected to environmental stresses. There is frequent flooding and channel degradation. It has not had the attention and care of those who understand the complexities of golf course management. And unfortunately, the course today is more of a liability than an asset to the community.
Partnered with Gil Hanse and Jim Wagner to to pursue a sympathetic restoration master plan, this includes:
Recapturing the original routing on the holes lost to military installations.
Establishing new course maintenance standards. Including course irrigation, to ensure every hole is properly provided the attention it needs to flourish.
Restoring the 18 hole course, renovating Karakung 9-hole course and establishing a new practice course called ‘The Cradle’.
Uncovering significant historical architectural features that have been lost to time and neglect to provide access to golden age architecture for players of all abilities and skill levels.
This restoration isn’t a preservation of Philadelphia's past, it is an endowment in the ground investment into the city’s future.
This restoration isn’t just a preservation of Philadelphia’s past, but an investment in our city’s future. Through this project, we plan to further benefit our green spaces, provide educational opportunities, generate revenue, and increase tourism, all while cultivating community togetherness.
In addition to recovering the original routing for daily use, we have a plan to transform Cobbs to a truly significant championship venue including expanding holes and increasing shot values. This will involve temporarily transforming several holes of Karakung to provide the necessary routing for a challenging and competitive composite course.