Feature Article - June 2011
Find a printable version here

Regional Information

A Look at Regional Trends

By Emily Tipping

Respondents generally had more modest budgets for their construction plans compared with last year's respondents. The exception is those in the Northeast, who have budgeted 24.9 percent more for construction than last year's respondents, with an average budget of $3,697,000 compared with last year's average budget of $2,960,000. (See Figure 33.)

The largest decrease in budgets for construction plans from 2010 to 2011 was seen in the West, where the average amount planned for construction fell 20.9 percent from $5,104,000 last year to $4,035,000. The other regions experienced decreases of 14.7 percent (in the South Atlantic) to 15.7 percent (in the South Central region).

The average amount budgeted for construction by respondents in all regions is $3,942,000. Respondents in the South Atlantic and West regions are planning to spend more than this amount, while respondents in other regions are spending slightly less. In the South Atlantic, respondents are planning to spend 12.6 percent more than the across-the-board average, and in the West, respondents are planning to spend 2.4 percent more. Some of these higher spending amounts could be driven by higher prices for construction in certain areas. For example, in the mountainous areas of the West, construction costs are generally higher than elsewhere. They also could be driven by the type of construction planned. As noted previously, respondents in the South Atlantic region are more likely to be planning new construction than respondents from other regions.

For the most part, regional respondents reported that their facilities included the same top features as respondents across the board. Respondents in the Northeast, South Atlantic and West were slightly more likely to include trails at their facilities than other respondents, and respondents in the South Central region were slightly more likely than other respondents to include fitness centers.

Many of the main features included in respondents' facilities differed slightly according to region. Many predominant features seem to be a function of where the facility is located. For example, warmer climates seem to be home to more outdoor amenities. The South Atlantic, South Central and Western regions were more likely to have outdoor than indoor aquatic facilities. In the South Atlantic states, 37.6 percent of respondents had outdoor aquatic facilities, vs. 25.2 percent with indoor. In the South Central region, 36.5 percent had outdoor and 26.6 percent had indoor aquatics. And in the West, 37.5 percent had outdoor while 25.2 percent had indoor aquatics. In the Midwest, on the other hand, the trend reversed, and 30.3 percent had indoor aquatic facilities, while 26.3 percent had outdoor facilities.