Award Winner - May 2012
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Morehead State University Recreation and Wellness Center

Morehead, Kentucky

S U B M I T T E D    B Y

Hastings+Chivetta Architects in St. Louis

Size: 101,054 square feet

Project Cost: $19.2 million

Quick Tour:

  • 3-court gymnasium
  • Two racquetball courts
  • Elevated track
  • Natatorium with competition-size, 6-lane, 25-yard swimming pool and lap pool with zip line and vortex
  • Fitness center with strength training
  • Wellness lab
  • Multipurpose rooms
  • Men's, women's and family locker rooms
  • Lounge
  • Game area
  • Outdoor pursuits
  • Meeting space
  • Administrative offices
  • Classroom
  • Storage rooms

The new 101,054-square-foot Recreation and Wellness Center at Morehead State University in Kentucky addresses the need for a healthier campus community in a facility that marries fitness and leisure.

While the new center is geared toward fitness, it also operates as a new home for the university's intramural sports leagues and features a wi-fi-compatible lounge area and a game room for relaxation and socialization, which comes equipped with billiards, air hockey, foosball and Wii Fit.

After entering the facility through the main entry area, which opens into a large lobby, patrons will find more than 50 group fitness classes each week, with more than 100 machines and equipment for members. The amount of equipment available also helps to increase workout time and decrease the wait time for equipment use. Also, the fitness machines are placed in different areas throughout the facility to enable members to work out in the main gym area, or in areas in which they can enjoy the scenery of the campus.

The design uses limestone panels and jumbo-sized brick that are similar in color to surrounding buildings to help interlace the facility with the campus. Meanwhile, a lighted green space adorns the front of the building and is used for pick-up games of Frisbee and other activities. With the extensive use of glass, natural light and the night sky permeate most spaces in the center.

The facility also features three basketball courts and two racquetball courts. Also, fitness and free weight areas are available to members, along with cardio hallways and balconies that are equipped with cardiovascular machines. When not using the fitness equipment, members can enjoy swimming in the facility's competition-size six-lane, 25-yard swimming pool with zip line and vortex. In addition, they can take part in the Outdoor Adventure/Challenge course.

The center's second level features two multipurpose rooms for group fitness classes, a wellness lab for assessment and personal training sessions, a cardio balcony, walking/running track, a natatorium observation area, along with a lounge area to relax or gather with friends.

The environmentally-friendly facility is LEED registered, pursuing Silver certification. Sustainable features include high-efficiency pumps, natural light sources and 75 percent recycling waste. Other devices in the building also are used to help save on energy costs, paper use and other resources. Meanwhile, a geothermal well water system heats the pool with very little electricity use. Moreover, lighting controls in the facility use daylight to determine how much power should be used, while CO2 sensors establish how much fresh air should be brought into the center.


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