University of Utah, George S. Eccles Student Life Center

Salt Lake City, Utah

The new Student Life Center is designed to be a transformative project on the University of Utah campus. The recreation center is a student-supported project and intended as a hub of social and recreational activity. The design team incorporated student input and involvement from the earliest stages of the project.

The resulting building is playful ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONASSOCIATED FIRMMHTN Architects, Inc., Code Consultants Inc., Cooper Construction Estimating, BERRA Spec SolutionsCOST PER SQ FT$246.00FEATURED IN2015 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYSports Stadiums/Athletic Facilities uplifting, a direct reflection of the quality of life at the university.

The design is inspired by the desert surroundings in the state of Utah. The color scheme is mostly orange and red hues from the landscape to the south. The angular surfaces throughout the facility are a nod to the rock formations in the red rock deserts. Nearly all surfaces in the building, from ceiling tiles to room dividers to the front entrance, are angled to depict the design team’s modern interpretation of the state’s rock formations.

The signature design feature repeated throughout the space is an art piece composed of copper pipe and stainless steel bars. The art piece is first seen as a two-story fireplace surround in the lobby, and again in the natatorium and behind the retail desk.

The facility incorporates sophisticated branding throughout the space. The signature ‘U’ logo is found on the floor at entry points, and included in metal railings and the drywall cloud in the fitness center.

The new building brings the previously disparate Campus Recreation Services together into a single building. The recreation center features a natatorium with a 50-meter lap pool, a leisure pool and a whirlpool. The 17,000-square-foot, two-level fitness center contains cardio equipment, weight machines and free weights. Other spaces include a three-court gym with a suspended track, a two-court auxiliary gym, bouldering and a four-story climbing wall, racquetball courts, four group fitness studios, a combative room, locker rooms and offices.