Auburn University had the ambitious goal of creating a facility that would help it become the “healthiest and most fit campus in the country.”
During the design process, students and administrators consistently expressed a desire for spaces that “felt like Auburn.” The design breaks down the new recreation and wellness center into intimate fitness neighborhoods that re-create the feeling of the campus’s many interconnected quads.
A five-story cardio tower marks the building’s entry and reflects Auburn’s historic towers and steeples while providing spaces for suspension training, group cycling and yoga. On the tower’s top floor, the yoga studio has hangar windows that fold up at the press of a button, opening it to the outdoors.
At one-third of a mile, the indoor running track is one of the nation’s longest and the first designed in a “corkscrew” configuration. The course, punctuated with a bright Auburn orange, winds through both gymnasiums, across the two-story atrium and around the atrium’s climbing tower while offering users different route choices and interval training.
The facility also has basketball courts, an outdoor leisure pool, cardio and fitness zones, a rock climbing wall, weight training areas and outdoor recreation spaces.
Athletic Business magazine honored the center with a “Facilities of Merit” award. Judges described it as “impressive in its sheer scale and scope. The project is also full of well-crafted details and attention to value and space.”