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Rec Center at Ashland University Takes Advantage of Lobby's Circular Design

The rec center at Ashland University takes advantage of its lobby's circular design.

Photo of the control desk in the lobby of the Arthur L. & Maxine Sheets Rybolt Recreation and Sport Sciences Center at Ashland UniversityPhoto of the control desk in the lobby of the Arthur L. & Maxine Sheets Rybolt Recreation and Sport Sciences Center at Ashland University

Control desks were at one time designed primarily to allow monitoring of access into a facility. But rec centers have evolved, and front desks now often function more like mission control centers, to the point where front-desk staff checking in visitors can be found standing with their backs to the building entrance. The lobby of the Arthur L. & Maxine Sheets Rybolt Recreation and Sport Sciences Center at Ashland University is just such a place; its control desk forms half of the rotunda floor's centerpiece, oriented to take advantage of building-program adjacencies and transparency. The Toledo, Ohio-based Collaborative Inc., the facility's architect, crafted a space ample enough to allow 360-degree views of the facility's first floor, as well as a bird's-eye view into the lower-level lounge via the centerpiece's other half, a semicircular cutout between the desk and the entrance. With a front-facing workstation located in the center, there's room for a staff presence robust enough to be the facility's eyes and ears - and to help out during traffic surges, too.

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