Shell Place Recreation Centre Expands Opportunities for Community in Alberta, Canada
New recreation and leisure opportunities at Shell Place transform the identity of the fast-growing community of Fort McMurray, Alberta, writes Micheal Day, senior project manager in HOK’s Sports + Recreation + Entertainment practice.
“The project comprises a multipurpose stadium and outdoor performance venue, a baseball and softball tournament complex, and several indoor and outdoor activity areas. Since opening in June 2015, the venue has hosted the Canadian Football League, the North American Soccer League and minor league baseball and football games, as well as a series of A-list concert performances and community events.
“The centrepiece of Shell Place is the new sports and performance complex, which includes SMS Equipment Stadium that can comfortably hold crowds from 5,000 to 20,000 people, and CNOOC Nexen Stage. An iconic, 45ft-tall, tensile membrane canopy inspired by the region’s undulating northern lights and snow drifts creates a focal point for the complex. Situated at one end of the stadium, CNOOC Nexen Stage uses this canopy structure as a dramatic backdrop.
“At the other end of the stadium is a ballpark complex, featuring a 2,300- seat baseball stadium with a berm and party zone areas that increase capacity to 5,500 fans, and four additional turf softball diamonds.”
“Shell Place is poised to catalyse a major societal shift in the community. By serving the needs of a diverse population, the multipurpose complex will advance Fort McMurray’s transformation from a transient, worker-oriented base to a more permanent, family-oriented community.”
Image credit: Layla Underwood/Regional Recreation Corporation of Wood Buffalo