City of Austin and YMCA

Austin Community Recreation Center

YMCA's front entry where patrons can participate in outdoor activities like group yoga.
Exterior entry with courtyard and local city emblem on the wall.
Exterior of the YMCA with white siding.
Exterior of the YMCA at dusk.
Front desk check-in with green feature ceiling.
Main green stairwell with seating below.
A main floor corridor leads to a welcome desk, community spaces, and a ceiling look-through into the upper level of the facility.
Teen recreation room with a variety of seating, red accents, and a pool table.
The walking track is surrounded by large windows that overlook the local community.
A basketball player and joggers utilize the open gym and track spaces simultaneously.
An open lap pool lets in natural daylight, as well as views to the adjacent leisure pool.
Austin Community Recreation Center
Exterior of the YMCA, featuring dark brick and double height windows.

City of Austin and YMCA

Austin Community Recreation Center

Austin, Minn.

Implementing the vision to improve its citizens’ quality of life, the City of Austin, Minn., hired design-build team BWBR and McGough Construction to design and build a new community recreation center. Formed by the partnership of the City of Austin and the YMCA and supported by Vision 2020, the new facility provides community members a safe, affordable, and healthy environment to meet, play, and exercise.

BWBR and its partners provided site analysis at five locations in Austin to determine optimal land use and highest value as evaluated from over a dozen criteria. The new site is in downtown Austin at the decommissioned power plant and was chosen for its ability to create a central, easily accessible community destination and redevelop a large underutilized site. Additionally, the design team led a partnership analysis to assess the issues involved in forming a partnership to own and operate a community recreation center.

The two-story facility includes a gymnastics area, community education and event space, leisure and lap lane pools, a wellness center, and indoor play area, as well as a gymnasium, track, and basketball courts. The overall design allows the YMCA to operate designated areas, while City-financed spaces like the youth activity center and indoor playground are free and open to the public. The building and site are planned to afford expansion ability in the future.

Size: 100,000 gross sq. ft.

Components: Gymnasium; fitness studios; indoor aquatics; indoor playground; youth activity center; teaching kitchen; gymnastics center; fitness equipment; community and event space

Completion: 2019