KICA’s drainage system beneath the Cougar Point Golf Course is some of the oldest infrastructure on the island, having been installed by the Kuwaitis in the 1970s. It’s about to get an upgrade.
The infrastructure is an important part of the large Beachwalker drainage basin (West Beach, portions of East Beach and Settlement), which discharges to the Kiawah River at an outlet on Beachwalker Drive. This drainage basin encompasses 38 ponds. KICA will use the spin-casting technique to repair large pipes within the system. Spin-casting is the latest in culvert rehabilitation technology for medium- to large-diameter storm water infrastructure, using a structural mortar applied centrifugally to attain a uniform thickness around the interior of compromised pipes. This method achieves two important factors: it avoids costly and time-consuming excavation, and provides a long-term service life. Before employing this method, KICA engineers visited communities where it has been in use, and were impressed with what they saw. KICA will also spot-excavate ponds along the course to open drainage flow, as well as lower the overall pond levels in the drainage basin to facilitate the project.
The timing of this work was coordinated with the Kiawah Island Golf Resort, which closed Cougar Point for renovations just after Thanksgiving. With Gary Player consulting, course renovations will include re-grassing the greens, tees, and fairways with Paspalum (the same highly acclaimed salt-tolerant grass that the resort has on its other four golf courses); laser level all tee boxes including the practice range; rebuild all bunkers; update the irrigation throughout the golf course; and rebuild existing bulkheads. The course is slated to reopen in October 2017.
KICA’s $1.5 million drainage work began in early December when final DHEC and Army Corp of Engineers permits were secured, and is scheduled to be completed in May. When contractors are working in the area, members will see aqua dams put in place in the ponds, which will then be dewatered to complete the work. Christmas holidays aside, KICA’s work will occur during regular construction hours, and there will be some noise from pumps and vacuum trucks removing sediment from the pipes. (KIGR has a permit for Sunday work.) We appreciate your patience as this important work is underway.