The Waste Management Phoenix Open is more than four months away but construction at TPC Scottsdale has already started.
The Thunderbirds House and Grounds Crew got things going on Monday, Sept. 16, the earliest the construction has ever started, but workers need to get going now because of the time and material it takes to build the luxury suites, grandstands, bleachers and all the other infrastructure for the tournament that draws the largest crowds in golf.
In 2018, tournament organizers announced a weekly attendance mark of more than 719,000. Close to 217,000 fans were tallied on Saturday that year, always the most highly attended day of the year for the Phoenix Open.
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In 2019, organizers made the decision not to publicly announce attendance figures.
“The only number we really care about is charity,” 2019 tournament chairman Chance Cozby said last year. “I’ve been in the group since 2010 and I can tell you that, internally, we never have any attendance goals.
“That’s never been our focus. We try to put on the best tournament we can and when the weather is good we have massive attendance and when it’s bad we still have incredible attendance. We know that’s not going to change.”
Nonetheless, the fans will come in large numbers and the course will be ready for them.
The first section where construction started for the 2020 event was the scaffolding on the 12th hole. Construction on the famed 16th hole will start Oct. 7 when crews begin the layout.
The Open is Jan. 27-Feb. 2, 2020, with the final round, as is tradition, scheduled for Super Bowl Sunday. It will be the 85th edition of the tournament, which makes it one of the five oldest events on the PGA Tour.