Project Essentials

  • LocationWest Vancouver, BC
  • ClientWest Vancouver Community Services Department
  • ArchitectHCMA Architecture + Design
  • Size86,000 ft² (7,989 m²)
  • BudgetC$27 million
  • Sustainable FeaturesCertified LEED Gold

At the project’s onset, West Vancouver had a  35-year old recreation centre that was disconnected from its neighbouring aquatic centre, undersized and inefficient for the community. The design mandate? To provide a “magnetic” gateway to the city’s recreation campus, and aggressively address social health and environmental innovation.

Fast + Epp developed a primary structure of concrete suspended slabs and a steel roof. Recycled decking from the previous community centre was used along the length of the interior circulation spine to provide a warm aesthetic to the space. This spine, featuring an operable skylight and colourful bridges on the upper levels, acts as the building’s primary artery, linking two gymnasiums, fitness rooms and wellness clinics.

While the building industry often measures a project’s success by the design team’s adherence to schedules, budgets, environmental and performance standards, this project challenged us to re-evaluate the true definition of success. The community centre, while meeting all these traditional targets, has become so much more for West Vancouver: it is a civic and social home away from home for thousands of residents.