• Successful Project Design Borne of Strong Relationships

    by Ralph Agostinelli April 2014

    School and sports administrators embarking on their first-ever capital project are sometimes surprised to learn how much architecture firms resemble other types of corporations. From the moment the architect steps in front of the building committee, making a pitch while brandishing renderings in watercolor, the image is of the architect as artist, driving this misreading of design firms.

  • Weighed by Debt, Milwaukee Y Eyes Shuttering Facilities

    by GEORGIA PABST, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI) April 2014

    Faced with crushing and unsustainable debt of $30 million, the YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee will undergo a "massive restructuring" that will result in a much smaller but more focused and sustainable organization, YMCA officials told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

  • Inside the 'Fastest-Growing YMCA in the Country'

    by Laura McCrystal; Inquirer Staff Writer April 2014

    Clad in Spandex, her hair pulled back in a ponytail, and still sweaty from her exercise class, Missy Turner collected her two most important possessions: her sons, ages 1 and 3. While Turner cooled down from her workout Wednesday, the trio lingered in the lobby of the mega-complex that has become one of the region's hottest fitness venues - the Haverford Area YMCA. "It's so new and state-of-the-art," said Turner, who lives in Drexel Hill and joined in January. Free child care, plus the classes, an indoor track, and three swimming pools are among the amenities that have helped make the Haverford Y into what one organization official describes as the fastest-growing YMCA in the country. With more than 20,500 members, it has become so popular that as cars pull into the expansive parking lot, attendants with flags direct them to the few available spaces - à la the Wells Fargo Center and Citizens Bank Park during games.

  • College Rec Race: Then and Now

    by Super User April 2014

    In the April issue of Athletic Business, we took a look at how current trends in college recreation compared to those 15 years ago, when AB teamed up with architectural firm RDG of Des Moines, Iowa, to address design and operation needs. Check out the full article here.

    Demand for recreation and fitness spaces has only increased since 1999, and colleges have been struggling to keep up. After more than 30 years of falling behind, students at the University of Wisconsin voted 12,070 to 1,914 to approve a segregated fee increase that will fund a $223 million renovation of its facilities. Below is a breakdown of how their current amenities compare to their Big Ten counterparts.


    Click the chart below to compare how space for fitness is currently allocated in facilities across the Big Ten:


    Universities haven't been sitting idle these past few years. Check out this rundown of the major campus rec construction in the Big Ten: 





  • Park District Considers $6M Expansion of Fitness Center

    by RICK KAMBIC. April 2014

    Roughly one year after saving the Central Lake YMCA in Vernon Hills and spending around $1 million to renovate the facility, park commissions are now considering a $6 million expansion onto the renamed Lakeview Fitness Center. The Vernon Hills Park District recently submitted a proposal to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources in hopes of receiving a $2.5 million rebate on the project. Park Board President David Doerhoefer said many of the proposed upgrades are on the district's long-term plan, but the decision to push now came after Illinois reinstated the grant program to create construction jobs.

  • Sports Tourism: Do Youth Facility Investments Pay Off?

    by MICHAEL SASSO; Tribune staff March 2014

    Whether taxpayers really benefit from paying big bucks for ballparks has stumped communities and economists for decades, and the debate continues with the Tampa Bay Rays stadium talks. However, the same cost-benefit analysis is playing out in some surprisingly small venues: youth baseball diamonds and basketball arenas. Developers and government leaders in the Tampa area are pitching at least four such proposals that together could cost up to $80 million. Two are indoor volleyball/basketball arenas, one is a soccer complex and one a mammoth 19-field baseball field complex in Pasco County.

  • Owner Defends Trampoline Park as 'Safer Than Bowling'

    by Super User March 2014

    By Jeff Sheler | The Virginian-Pilot CHESAPEAKE Commercial trampoline parks are springing up all over the country - including one in Greenbrier - offering what their operators describe as an "extreme-sport" experience in a safe, controlled setting. Pediatricians are no fans. They call trampolines downright dangerous and urge parents to keep their children off them. That advice came too late for Kathryn Keck, whose 4-year-old son, Graham, broke his leg last month at Cloud9 Trampoline Park, one of about 70 reported injuries at the indoor facility since it opened in November near the Conference Center. "If I could turn back the clock, I would never have taken him in there," said Keck, of Virginia Beach.

  • Ft. Wayne Y Gets $2.2M Toward Services, Facilities

    by Vivian Sade, Vivian Sade The Journal Gazette March 2014

    The money will be used for branches in Wells, Whitley and Allen counties, said Marty Pastura, president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne.

  • Smart Meters: Leading the Way to Energy-Saving Behavior

    by Jerry Burke March 2014

  • Special Needs Rec Thriving, But Facilities Still an Issue

    by SUSAN DEMAR LAFFERTY March 2014

    With March Madness underway on college campuses across the country, Illinois State University and Illinois Wesleyan University last weekend hosted a special group of 1,500 basketball players who competed in the Special Olympics.