GEC and CEI to design two new recreation centres in Calgary

The City of Calgary has recently embarked on an ambitious program of providing comprehensive community and recreation facilities in every district within the City boundary. GEC Architecture of Calgary with CEI Architecture have been awarded the design contract for two of the four new regional recreation centres that will provide for the recreation and wellness needs of Calgary residents for several decades. CEI has been brought in to provide a specialist focus on recreation and sport planning and to advise on design issues resulting from the functional requirements of the building’s program.

The larger of the two projects, Rocky Ridge Recreation Centre is sited on a prominent hilltop in North West Calgary offering challenging topography, ponds and great views of the Rocky Mountains from the higher elevations. This $140 million project provides an integrated program of ice surfaces, aquatics, fitness, and cultural spaces including a theatre, art studios, library, gymnasia, child care, physiotherapy suites, fitness and a running track. These spaces are arranged mainly on two levels under a spectacular undulating roof that shelters the entire building and provides an open, consistent and vibrant interior environment throughout. The building location on the large, green-field site ensures that as much of the local environment as possible remains in its original state and the unique features of the hilltop are not only maintained but also enhanced through integration with the building and the development of trails and interpretative stations.

The second major regional community and recreation centre CEI is making a significant design contribution to is Quarry Park Recreation Centre located on a very challenging site within a light industrial and developing residential area near central Calgary. This reclaimed site features unstable soils and a special character neighbourhood context that results in rather unique programming and design solutions. The facility is a local community centre as well as a resource for the people who work in the vicinity and demand a significant fitness and amenity features. The planning of Quarry Park Recreation Centre is very efficient and compact to minimize the building footprint and thus reduce the impact of the geotechnical remediation costs. The facility will feature an integrated and open environment offering aquatics, gymnasium, group fitness studios, meeting and multi-purpose rooms, daycare and child-minding, library and significant support spaces.

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