Student engagement is up 25% following BGSU's renovation.
Correlation to the campus master plan / mission
Built in the late 1970s, the Student Rec Center (SRC) was the leading facility amongst peer institutions. Yet as time passed, needs changed and the building fell from favor. Revitalizing the facility was a key piece of Bowling Green State University’s plan to support student recruitment and retention.
An initial feasibility study revealed areas of improvement including: more natural light, right-size program areas, insufficient mechanical systems and poor circulation paths. As part of the study, The Collaborative developed cost estimates for each proposed component, along with projected yearly escalation costs. Conceptual design renderings were also created to support the decision making process.
Impact to BGSU's recreation program
The Student Rec Center now brings students in and WOWs them. Student engagement is up 25% following the 89,383 SF renovation. The renovated facility is now the centerpiece of the prospective student tour and serves as a recruiting tool.
Unique aesthetic or architectural design features
A new glass entry helps the SRC achieve its goal of getting back on the campus tour. The transparent entry wall reconnects the building to the campus green and welcomes students; it has become the place to see and be seen. Natural light flows to the strength and conditioning areas; inspiring activity.
With open forums, student surveys and email blasts, the design team gathered feedback from students, staff and administrators. Together they refined conceptual plans to support their comments, including better visibility, control / security and highlighting the BGSU brand. It also became apparent that the facility needed to maintain operational throughout renovation.
Following the Board’s approval, The Collaborative moved forward with the design for a more efficient layout, including a new curved front glazing wall, relocated main entry and vestibule, control desk and new centralized stair. The design also provided more intuitive homes for the Wellness Center, offices and pro shop. Upgraded mechanical systems create a more comfortable workout environment. The improved horizontal and vertical circulation has increased the ease of student and visitor navigation throughout the four story building.. Drop-in services and equipment are located on the two primary levels for easy access and discovery. Specific destinations, like classes and the pool, are located on lower levels.
The main floor features an expanded weight/strength area with state-of-the-art equipment and PLAE flooring to accommodate heavy use without the need for powerlifting platforms. It includes designated areas for functional training/fitness with Torque Edge units to accommodate a wide range of exercises. A designated slam wall takes hits for specific medicine ball workouts. One end of the cardio area features Technogym stretching equipment for warm up and cool down. For patron convenience, wallet/cell phone lockers and cleaning stations are built into columns throughout the weight/strength area. Three activity courts with new hardwood flooring include new standards for volleyball, tennis, and badminton flank the southeast side of the building. A Multi-Activity Court (MAC) accommodates a wide range of activities including soccer and floor hockey. The personal training office/reception area offers personal trainers, interns, or practicum students to assist patrons with equipment use. Other features include the climbing wall, lounge with 80" TV, Wellness Connection Office, pool spectator area overlooking Cooper Pool and remodeled restrooms with added sinks and stalls.
The design expanded the Balcony area 25 feet to accommodate additional cardio equipment. Options now include a variety of unique equipment including Torque, Synergy, Jacob's Ladder, Lateral X, Versa Climber, Ski Ergometer, Marop Rope pull, etc. Woodway self-powered treadmills were purchased through partnerships with the Office of Campus Sustainability. The Balcony also gives access to the running track.
Lower Level One is home to Andrews Pool and Cooper Pool, and includes remodeled locker rooms with new day use lockers, designated primping stations, individual shower stalls, and new saunas. A private locker room near the showers in each locker room offers larger lockers, towel service, carpeted flooring, and cable television. There are also two family changing rooms with showers. A secondary entrance is accessible via finger vein reader.
Lower Level Two houses the fitness class facilities such as the Falcon Fitness Studios. Fitness Studio A (spin room) features PLAE flooring, additional storage units, and updated AV (projection screen, etc.) Falcon Fitness Studio B (dance room) offers refinished hardwood flooring, revamped HVAC, improved airflow, new AV, a new storage area to enable greater space on the fitness floor, and new equipment for greater variety (ex. Kettle Worx, Vipr, etc.). A fitness lounge including a TV and Four Winds monitor gives patrons an area to relax before and after Group Exercise classes. Other facilities include a Functional Training Zone room designated for TRX specific training; Multi-Use Synthetic Court and Multi-Use Hardwood Court available for drop in use; 3 squash courts; 6 raquetball courts; 1 additional sport court; and Restrooms.
Relationship between facility design and staffing
A new welcome desk offers sight lines throughout the strength and weight training areas and provides staff with all controls for lights, fans, shades and the sound system. The centralized control desk helps reduce staff ratios and the check-in process is streamlined with a vein scanner system. On the main level, the fitness zones are fully on display with a raised walkway encircling the area which allows for friendly observation.
Innovative construction materials or methods
Phasing the renovation maintained student services over the 11 month construction window. With support from many players, BGSU moved weights and cardio equipment to the Field House to allow workouts to continue throughout construction. A coordinated construction and access plan allowed the pool to stay open for most of the construction process.
Sustainable/Green features/LEED Rating
Registered under LEED 2009 for Commercial Interiors, and targeting Silver Certification, the SRC preserved 170,000 SF of floor area. New HVAC systems improved energy efficiency and improved users comfort level. The exterior brick shell was stabilized along with roof replacement.
Sustainable features include automated window shades at main façade; all LED lighting; low flow toilet fixtures and showers; bottle filling stations; recycled wood basketball court flooring and exterior solar shading devices.
Use of technology
BGSU implemented vein reading capability (along with Student IDs) to allow quicker access into the building. All multiuse room reservations is all done through a computer scheduling system. Audio/video intercom systems provide controlled access at all entry points. Staff control the central televisions, sound and music systems from the welcome desk along with all lighting systems in the building.