The design goal was to create a building that tells all who enter that they are special people, valued members of the community, and members of the YMCA’s extended family.
In response to MDEQ requirements related to flood paths, which limit ground floor area, the building rises four stories, plus mezzanine, above the ground with parking tucked below the building. Over half of the site is open and landscaped with native plantings, creating a natural park-like environment near the residential areas.
The new facility was designed to respect the adjacent residential neighborhood while providing a transitional buffer to the downtown. To fit with the residential environment, the building is clad in brick with patterning and accents. It also steps back to the north and east as it gains height to provide a more compatible scale. Large areas of glass accentuate the facades. Glass clerestories are reminiscent of cornices.
The first floor contains office, locker, child care and aquatic spaces. The second floor contains exercise space, fitness equipment, multi-purpose rooms and lounge areas overlooking the pools. The third floor contains a gymnasium with a jog/walk track on the mezzanine offering a spectacular view of Ann Arbor.
Outstanding Achievement Award, Honorable Mention, ESD