Building Strength: Dowd YMCA Renovation & Addition

Page 1

1 Dowd YMCA Renovation & Addition


A

s a nonprofit committed to youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility, the local Y serves as a cornerstone of many communities. Swimming lessons, day camps, structured classes, individual workouts, community meetings, and basketball games all build fitness­–and build relationships. People may join for the exercise, but soon come to realize that the Y offers something special: true diversity. People of all ages, races, backgrounds, and income levels use and enjoy the Y together. It’s a place of authentic overlap, a chance to get to know people outside of your neighborhood or your office bubble. The Y is for everybody.


A new circula tion spine unifies old and new; visual connections abound.


NG I RK K A C P DE

LEXI

NGT ON

L EL

DW L A

C

D EX OWD IS TIN

GB

GA

YM C

UIL

A

DIN

G

LLE

MO

RE

AD

RY

HE

DIT

AD

ION MOREHEAD ENTRY PLAZA

UP TO W

E.

LEX ENT INGT O RY PLA N ZA

SO

4


PRITCHARD BAPTIST CHURCH

ND

UT HE

SO

OU

TH

WN

BL VD

Charlotte’s iconic Central Y was one such storied place. Located on Morehead Street adjacent to Uptown in the booming South End neighborhood near historic Dilworth, the Central Y had served as Charlotte’s flagship Y since its construction in 1964. Over the years, a series of ad hoc additions and renovations had addressed pressing needs, but created a jumble of spaces. A long, thin sevenstory residential tower and other buildings with pools, fitness areas, racquetball and basketball courts, and locker rooms needed to be unified and updated for a new era of use. When it came time to undertake a major renovation, the client wanted to take advantage of the site’s highly desirable location along the pedestrian-oriented light rail system. Over the years, suburban Y’s had out paced metro Y’s in terms of facilities and amenities; however, with its proximity to Uptown and the diverse and growing population of South End, this project presented the opportunity to attract a broader membership and restore the branch to its former preeminence.


B E FO R E

The 50,000 SF addition was constructed in the former parking lot in front of the existing to wer, and a new entr y plaza welcomes members and guests.


7


Rather than demolishing the iconic buildings and starting from scratch, the client wanted to reimagine the existing facilities with a new look. The renovation started with developing strategies to address the key issue: how could the new design unify the buildings and make the

sprawling existing circulation legible? The assemblage of buildings also came with significant code issues to be unraveled, and solutions evolved over the course of a multi-year design process beginning in 2012. RENOVATED FIRST FLOOR PLUS GALLERY / STUDIOS FITNESS 600 SF

STOR.

SAUNA

MEN'S HEALTH CENTER

SERVICE

AREAWAY

160 SF STEAM

SHOWERS

ELEC

ELEC

SERVICE 1,960 SF

BOILER ROOM

MECH TOILET LAV

MEN'S LOCKERS 11,000 SF JAN.

SERVICE

STEAM

YOGA

200 SF

3,230 SF

STORAGE

UP

STOR

SAUNA

MECH

FUTURE SOCIAL INNOVATION

SERVICE 840 SF

CONFERENCE

SERVICE

1,790 SF

SERVICE

BARRE

610 SF

920 SF

NEW MEP WHIRLPOOL

2,150 SF

ELEC

LOBBY

EQUIP

SERVICE

7,750 SF

1,090 SF

AIR TR.

STOR.

CORRIDOR

LOBBY 720 SF CYCLING/FITNESS PRE-FUNCTION

FITNESS

GROUP EX DIR. / PERSONAL TRAINING

3,640 SF +8"

PILATES

FITNESS

+4"

820 SF

STOR.

OFFICE

SPORTS PERFORMANCE

420 SF

FITNESS

4,630 SF

1,720 SF

STOR.

RACQUETBALL

GYM

GYM

2,610 SF

840 SF

RACQUETBALL

RACQUETBALL

ELEC

STOR.

NEW RACQUETBALL CYCLING 70 BIKES

STOR. FIRE PUMP

SERVICE 890 SF

8

UP

UP

ELEC

UP

SERVICE LAUNDRY

290 SF UP

CORRIDOR

DUMPSTERS


RENOVATED SECOND FLOOR PLUS GALLERY / ATRIUM

DN

WOMEN'S HEALTH CENTER

ENTRY PAVILION

FITNESS

LOBBY

1,450 SF

DN

280 SF

Morehead Plaza

TLT STOR.

Primary Stair

SHOWERS

547 LOCKER FRAMES

WOMEN'S LOCKERS

LAV.

CONFERENCE 1,590 SF

WOMEN'S LOCKERS

VANITY

7,350 SF

TOILET

VANITY

STEAM

VANITY

SAUNA

POOLS

CHS UP

6,010 SF

LOBBY 520 SF STAIR DN

OFFICE 530 SF

STOR

FAMILY LOCKERS

POOL

1,320 SF

8,220 SF

LOBBY 820 SF

RESOURCE ROOM

INFANTS

STOR. STROLLER PARKING

TODDLERS

CHILD ENRICHMENT CENTER

OFFICE

CHAPEL

100 SF

130 SF

WOMEN

MEN

LOBBY

ELEV

1,070 SF ACCESS CONTROL

2,460 SF KIOSK CHECK-IN

ELEV

SERVICE 860 SF

LOBBY

ENTRY PAVILION

5,510 SF

DN

Connecting Gallery

PRO SHOP 345 SF

Lexington Plaza

C0-WORKING LOBBY

OPEN TO BELOW

2,950 SF

OPEN TO BELOW

DRY CLEANER 180 SF STOR.

LOBBY 180 SF OPEN TO BELOW

OPEN TO BELOW

OPEN TO BELOW

LOBBY DINING 1,130 SF

OPEN TO BELOW

CONFERENCE CONFERENCE 160 SF

140 SF

PATIO LOBBY 750 SF

KITCHEN DN

PATIO

1,030 SF SERVICE 350 SF

BRANCH STORAGE

DRY STORAGE

SERVICE 350 SF

ELEC

EXISTING Multi-disciplinary teamwork and coordination with a number of entities was critical to addressing these challenges. The general contractor joined the team early in the process to provide expertise on constructability and cost-conscious solutions, while a code consultant helped to determine the construction type and strategies for code compliance. The

ADDITION

design team worked closely with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Building Standards department to determine mutually agreeable life safety strategies including sprinklering the entire existing building. These productive working relationships proved invaluable as work progressed and various site conditions were uncovered, allowing for smooth communication and win-win solutions.


The new design created a 50,000 SF addition, renovated the existing 145,000 SF, and created a double-height central spine to clarify the circulation. This spine, a gallery space that runs between the existing tower and the addition, created visual connections into all the major activity spaces above and below it. A secondary circulation spine converges with the main gallery at the central controlled access point.

A two-stor y circula tion spine intersects the existing building and addition.


11


The refreshed Lexington Street entr y also provides a new plaza for early morning joggers to meet before a workout.

12


An entr y galler y overlooks the n ew Johnson Fitness Center which was reclaimed from underutilized racquetball courts .

New glass fronts for the racquetball courts add visibility and improve the player experience.

13


An independent clinic offers onsite health ser vices for member co nvenience.


15


The addition holds a new fitness center on the upper level and spaces for functional fitness, hot and cold yoga, and barre on the lower level. These spaces were designed as boutique highend facilities comparable to those in private studios, with an eye toward attracting women and millennials. The existing buildings house the pools, basketball and racquetball courts, a cycle studio, locker rooms, and a child watch area.


The child wa tch center is enga ging, cheerful, and visually connected to the fitness spaces.

Built-in amenities such as sea ting, ga thering spaces, and lockers keep the circula tion spine active.

17



The rooftop terrace with its views of the Upto wn Charlotte skyline has become a popular venue for outdoor training and classes, as well as social events in the evenings.


The yoga and barre studios off the first-floor spine crea tes a boutique experience tha t aligns with the YMCA’s goal of reaching a larger audience of women and younger members. The yoga studio was engineered to provide both hot and cool yoga within 30-minutes of class turnover.

Both formal and informal meeting spaces are a vailable for member and community use.

20


The double-height third floor fitness center provides ample space for multiple types of workouts. The eastfacing windo w wall provides a panoramic view of Upto wn Charlotte. The windo w wall includes shading devices tied to a sun-tracking sensor to ensure proper 21 solar control as required throughout the day.


This former basketball g ym was converted into a flexible space housing large-group exercise classes during the week and worship ser vices on Sunday mornings.

The overall aesthetic is simple, clean, and modernist, with references to the neighborhood’s historic brick mills and industrial buildings. The design retains exposed brick, wood, and concrete structural elements wherever possible, and the spaces are voluminous and flexible to accommodate evolving needs as fitness trends change over time.

22


As with any renovation, new design challenges were uncovered as construction progressed. The 12’ floor-to-floor heights in some spaces required creative problem solving in collaboration with the Mecklenburg County Building Standards Department and a code consultant on the design team. The cycling studio proved particularly complex, and the planned parking structure needed to be relocated when a water main running underneath the footprint was identified. (The parking deck ultimately landed on a separate adjacent site, and this Y branch is the first in the region to have structured parking.)

Former back-of-house space with typical lo w floor-to-floor heights was converted into a large tiered cycling studio.


24


The Morehead Street eleva tion ser ves as a “billboard” allo wing commuters to se e the activity within fitness spaces into the evening. A large stair to wer se r ves the rooftop outdoor fitness and running track, combining egress with ca rdio workouts.

The seven-year process, from initial proposals in 2012 to conceptual drawings to fundraising to construction, was completed in the summer of 2019. The resulting design restored one of Charlotte’s major beloved civic institutions to its former preeminence to serve another generation of community members. The addition is designed to expand vertically to accommodate future growth as needed, and the design concepts were so successful that the Y is hoping to replicate strategies from this project in other regional projects. As in a fitness journey, success in a multi-year project requires patience, motivation, consistency, planning, and hard work. The process itself is part of the experience, and the return on investment is, ultimately, immense.


PROJECT TIMELINE

Preliminary Studies & Proposals

2016

2015

2013

2014

Contractor Selection

On-site Parking Studies

Site Rezoning, including Parking Deck on South Blvd.

5th - 7th Floor Renovation

Pritchard Site Rezoning


Demo & Construction Begins

Renovations Complete

Addition & Renovation Drawings

2019

2017

2018

Pritchard Parking Deck construction

Addition Opens


28

.COM


Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.