City of Austin and YMCA

Austin Community Recreation Center

The walking track is surrounded by large windows that overlook the local community.
A main floor corridor leads to a welcome desk, community spaces, and a ceiling look-through into the upper level of the facility.
A bright green staircase invites gym-goers to take the stairs, and a seating alcove provides a quiet place for a post-workout rest.
An open lap pool lets in natural daylight, as well as views to the adjacent leisure pool.
Children and adults alike enjoy the slides and pool equipment in the leisure pool area.
The walking track rings around an exercise equipment area.
A jogger on the walking track passes an overlook into one of the gymnasiums.
A basketball player and joggers utilize the open gym and track spaces simultaneously.
An upstairs corridor, connected by a bright green staircase, looks into an upper gym.
A jogger on the upper track looks down on the gymnastics facility.
Austin Community Recreation Center
Austin Community Recreation Center
Austin Community Recreation Center

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