Thursday 2nd March 2017
This week, Martin Arnold attended the official opening of a £1.7m extension to the gym at White Horse Leisure & Tennis Centre, which was completed earlier this year by Francis Construction. The ceremony was arranged by Vale of White Horse District Council, and Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) who operate the Centre, and included guests such as local Councillor Mike Badcock and Paralympian Louise Hunt, who competed at both London 2012 and Rio 2016.
Martin Arnold’s Architectural and Surveying teams have worked alongside the Council and GLL to develop a finished product which not only provides much needed additional gym space for the users, but also has a design which stands out, yet is in-keeping with the existing building. The curvature of the extension followed the outline of the existing gym, whilst the increased head-height and the use of Pilkington Profilit glazing provided additional area with a light and spacious feel for the users. Internal improvements were also carried out to the existing gym space, and associated changing facilities to provide an overall improved gym experience. Works were also carried out to provide an outside area of decking for the onsite crèche facilities.
To the front of the centre a large galvanised canopy was designed to ensure that the large extension did not detract from the entrance to the Centre. Martin Arnold then worked with local artist Rachel Barbaresi, a Council funded appointment through the Percent for Arts scheme, which encourages developers to contribute to local art projects. Rachel created ‘Celeritas’, a science inspired piece of art which sits above the canopy, and conveys a sense of time and space. The design starts densely near the entrance of the building and grows outward, giving a sense of cosmic expansion.
The team here at Martin Arnold are proud to have been able to undertake the design work for the extension, take the scheme through planning, procure and manage the works as Employers’ Agent, and most importantly complete the project within budget, whilst enabling the opening of the Centre to new members in January of 2017 as programmed.