Columbus Crew SC reveal look of new training facility


To meet the needs of Major League Soccer’s Columbus Crew SC, Burns & McDonnell and local architects and construction advisors teamed up to design the team’s new, 42,000-square-foot OhioHealth Performance Center training facility. Located directly adjacent to the existing MAPFRE Stadium, the goal of Columbus Crew SC’s new home is to provide a world-class center for First Team and Academy players and coaches.

“Leveraging past experience with developing training facilities for professional teams, we collaborated with The Columbus Architectural Studio and Moody Nolan to develop an interior design with a player-focused mentality,” said Erica Muhlenbruch, who led the interior design for the project from Burns & McDonnell. “We met with team ownership, team leaders and coaches regularly to have a full understanding of day-to-day activities and schedules, and applied that information to room sequencing, access points and more, to maximize the efficiency of the space.”

(Credit: Burns & McDonnell)

The facility will contain amenities such as a weight room, player lounge, recovery room, training room, hydrotherapy area and full-service kitchen and dining space. Unique design features include:

Both the First Team and Academy players will each have dedicated locker rooms, player lounges, training and equipment space.

The space was designed to evoke a strong sense of team pride, incorporating the team’s branding and colors into all aspects.

It is the only MLS facility to convert a soccer specific stadium into a larger training complex

Daylight and visual connections to the exterior, with all heavily occupied spaces along the pitch featuring floor-to-ceiling windows, allowing users and visitors to feel connected whether they are inside or out.

“The development of our OhioHealth Performance Center has been a true team effort,” said Tim Bezbatchenko, president and general manager of Columbus Crew SC.

(Credit: Burns & McDonnell)

“It’s been incredible to be an integrated part of the design team, knowing the new, world-class training facility will be unique to our team’s needs and helps bring to life the ambitious vision that our ownership group, The Haslam and Edwards Family, has for this Club. The collective design team have created a professional and optimal environment that will strengthen and further develop our soccer operations, from our Academy to our First Team, allowing us to attract top talent and build a player development system that will put us in a position to contend for championships.”

(Credit: Burns & McDonnell)

Though the project has not been directly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, Burns & McDonnell and the design team are working closely with Columbus Crew SC ownership to consider design changes for social distancing and health measures in line with CDC requirements. To date, some of those changes include shifting away from self-serve areas in the dining space and focusing on materials and fixtures that inhibit the growth of bacteria.

Construction of the training facility began in early June 2020 and is expected to be complete by June 2021.

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James has been Editor of Stadia since 2018 having worked at print and digital magazines and websites around the world covering everything from lifestyle to sport, technology, motoring, and more. He also edits Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International.

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