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P-714 Physical Fitness Center, U.S. Marine Corps Air Station New River, Jacksonville, N.C.

Designed to replace an older fitness center and pool facility on base, the new 46,000-square-foot structure will not only house a full-sized basketball court, weight room, dividable workout room and 50-meter, six-lane pool, but the offices and conference room for the station's community services group. The new facility is located near barracks and officer housing so that base personnel will not have to travel from one end of the air station to the other to work out and get exercise.

"Our base contacts and Whiting Turner, the general contractor, were a real pleasure to work with on the design aspects of this project," recalls Architect and Project Manager Thomas Ellis, with project architect HBA Architects project manager on the fitness facility. "We wanted to design a fun building where personnel could have a good time working out. Our military clients at the Station were open to trying certain ideas which allowed us to get beyond the colonial Georgian architecture which dominates at many bases like this. We were able to create a very modern, very upbeat design reflective of a contemporary fitness facility, while still using traditional architectural materials in tune with nearby barracks and other buildings on base." The structural steel frame building's exterior is brick and CMU, reflecting the look of much of the Air Station's architecture. The architect said he chose a Forest Green standing seam metal roof for the center, consistent with roofing material and color on other buildings throughout the station. The Englert S2500 series metal roof panel chosen is a 2-inch mechanically seamed structural metal roof system used primarily on pre-engineered metal building systems.

The Englert standing seam roof also provided the platform for a 60kW roof mounted photovoltaic system from American Solar Wholesale that will provide part of the energy needed to power the fitness facility throughout the year. LEED credits earned from using the standing seam metal roof and the photovoltaics will go toward owner and project facilitator, NAVFAC's (Naval Engineering Facilities Engineering Command) Mid-Atlantic requirement of LEED Silver and HBA's efforts to earn a LEED Gold certification for the facility, Ellis noted. The project earned LEED Gold from the USGBC. Most of the internal construction in the workout areas, basketball court and pool consisted of glazed masonry. The natatorium, weight room, and gymnasium used acoustical roof decking from Epic Metals Corp. to help reduce the noise level in the facility. Ellis also chose 2,100 square feet of curved perforated curtain aluminum ceiling material from Ceilings Plus for the reception area of the fitness facility. "We specified curved ceiling panels to allow daylighting to penetrate deeper into the reception area and to bring down the scale of the space and make the entry area more intimate in what is largely an open and airy facility," says Ellis. At the direction of NAVFAC, the architect also established early contractor involvement with the construction team from Whiting Turner. This resulted in a construction manager at risk process that allowed HBA, co-architect firm, Hankins and Anderson Architects and Engineers, and Whiting Turner to work together to cultivate and assay the design. This led to cost savings early on.

Project facilitator: NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic, Norfolk, Va.

General contractor: Whiting Turner, Raleigh, N.C.

Architects: HBA Architects, Virginia Beach, Va., and Hankins and Anderson Architects and Engineers, Glen Allen, Va.

Photovoltaic array designer: FLS Energy, Asheville, N.C.

Roofing contractor: Curtis Construction Co., Kinston, N.C.

Ceiling: Ceilings Plus, Los Angeles, www.ceilingsplus.com, Circle #46

Metal roof panels: Englert Inc., Perth Amboy, N.J., www.englertinc.com, Circle #47

Photovoltaics: American Solar Wholesale, Laguna Hills, Calif., www.americansolarwholesale.com, Circle #48

Roof decking: Epic Metals Corp., Rankin, Pa., www.epicmetals.com