2011 Facility of Merit Winner: California State University, East Bay, Recreation & Wellness Center

Described as the last piece to the campus life puzzle at California State University, East Bay, the Recreation & Wellness Center was purposely located at the edge of the academic zone and across the street from student housing, effectively becoming a transitional space between the two. Providing what one judge called "a strong visual identity through the use of strong forms and bold color," the building's most recognizable exterior element is an aluminum perforated screen veil devised to minimize direct sunlight, diffuse daylight and maximize vistas to San Francisco Bay. This is both an aesthetic touch and symbolic of the building's (and campus') broader mission of sustainability. The roof plane is shaped to funnel all rainwater to a series of bioswales, where a combination of native plants and climate-appropriate species absorb 100 percent of all storm water, avoiding city storm-drain systems. In addition, a ventilated trombe wall allows for passive heating of the gymnasium by capturing the sun's heat within the exposed western-facing concrete wall and glazing assembly, which then radiates into the gym during the night. In all, 70 percent of interior spaces are naturally ventilated and passively heated, which eliminated the need for active mechanical heating or cooling systems.

The various sustainable features of the building, one judge said, were "integrated in a very tasteful way," while another called such efforts "thoughtful" and "admirable." The design's "simple forms balance each other," another panelist noted, "reinforcing and maximizing a tight site."

Judges' Comments: The sustainability treatment of this facility separated it from the other projects judged by the panel. The collection and treatment of 100 percent of stormwater on site combined with only 30 percent of the facility requiring artificial ventilation, heating and cooling is unique in recreation center design.

- Erik Kocher, Hastings + Chivetta Architects Inc.

The large, south-facing screen provides sun control while offering views to the wellness area and back out onto the campus, and gives the building a strong identity. The building utilizes very economical materials in a sophisticated manner.

- Tom Scarlata, Bargmann Hendrie + Archetype Inc.

The simple concept and minimized finishes created great value for the budget, while energy- and resource-saving measures were carefully integrated into the bold, colorful design. The building fits its site and the campus like a glove.

- Mark Bodien, Moody•Nolan Inc.

Architect of Record:LPA Inc.Irvine, Calif.

Cost: $19.1 millionSquare Feet: 54,148Funded By: Student FeesMajor Facility Components: Two-court gymnasium, track, fitness center, wellness center, multipurpose rooms, locker rooms, juice bar

70csueastbay6.jpg70csueastbay6.jpgPhoto by Costea Photography Inc. Click here for the full photo gallery

The 2011 Athletic Business® Facility of Merit™ awards were recently selected by a panel of sports and recreation facility architects during two days of judging in Chicago. The 10 winners are being announced in this space during the first two weeks in October, and profiles of all 10 will appear in the December issue of Athletic Business. The awards will be presented to the facility owners and architects at the Athletic Business Conference & Expo in Orlando, Fla., on Friday, Dec. 2.
Buyer's Guide
Information on more than 3,000 companies, sorted by category. Listings are updated daily.
Learn More
Buyer's Guide
AB Show 2023 in Baltimore
AB Show is a solution-focused event for athletics, fitness, recreation and military professionals.
Nov 1-4, 2023
Learn More
AB Show 2023