Virginia Tech previews indoor athletic training facility


Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) has previewed its newly completed Indoor Athletic Training Facility (IATF). Media and guests were invited to view the US$18m, 92,000ft2 building – the latest addition to Virginia Tech’s sports facilities.

“Former Virginia Tech Athletic Director, Jim Weaver, was the champion of the project and Hokie Football Coach Frank Beamer inspired the design for the IATF,” said Fred Ortiz, associate principal with HKS Sports & Entertainment Group and the lead designer on the project.

“During a speech to the Richmond Hokie Club, Beamer made a connection to the university’s core values – inscribed on the pylons at Memorial Court above the War Memorial Chapel – as a device intended to motivate and inspire the football team. At team meals and before and after practice, the team would recite the following: Brotherhood, Leadership, Loyalty, Ut Prosim, Service, Sacrifice, Honor and Duty,” Ortiz added.

Pylons with the values are primary supports for IATF’s large barrel-vaulted roof, and serve as a daily reminder to student athletes as to why they are here and their role in the community.

“This large training facility had to fit, not only its immediate context, but also with the collegiate gothic-style buildings on campus,” Ortiz said. The neighboring Cassell Coliseum and Merryman Center inspire the barrel-vaulted roof form, and column support details mimic Lane Stadium.

Meeting requirements

Functional requirements for the facility included over 200,000ft2 (210ft x 400ft) of flexible training space, appropriate run-off clearances and padded walls for safety, 85ft-high clearance to accommodate special teams practice, high bay sports lighting and platforms at 20ft and 60ft heights to allow for coaching and videographers to work both inside and out.

Six garage doors allow a larger training area and ease of access, and a large translucent wall provides ambient light, minimizing the use of power to illuminate the space.

“To give you an idea of the scale of this facility, the White House can actually fit within this huge volume,” Ortiz said. “The entire design-build team, including partners at WM Jordan Company, are quite proud of this accomplishment.”

August 20, 2015

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