Edmonton South Soccer Centre Expansion
Client : City of Edmonton
Area : 62,300 sf
Program : Two Indoor Sports Fields (Soccer Field, Hardscape Field, Spectator Viewing Area, Changerooms), Multi-Purpose Community Rooms, Administrative and Support Spaces
Associated Architects : MBAC
Next to a forested ravine at the heart of an industrial district, the proposed Edmonton Soccer Association South Centre Expansion will revitalize and increase the capacity of one of three such facilities in Edmonton, Alberta. To the existing soccer, lacrosse, and hard ball program, the Expansion adds two new multipurpose playing fields, a new lobby, and a vibrant outdoor realm.
Branching from the northwest corner of the existing rectangular structure, the Extension’s slightly trapezoidal footprint is primarily devoted to the new double playing fields. Scaled to the surrounding two-storey buildings, this volume is slightly rotated relative its neighbour, its north and south exterior walls canted outward both to reduce the amount of direct sunlight entering the building in summer and to bring a more dynamic dimension to the industrial typology it echoes. These north and south elevations have translucent high-performance cladding for diffuse interior illumination, and to make the entry points highly visible by both day and night, when they glow from within.
The western elevation is clad in a solid band for energy savings, while to the east, the Extension is joined to the existing structure via a connective space comprising the new public lobby. Besides playing fields and lobby, the Extension’s 62,000-square-foot interior includes two multipurpose rooms, an extension to the existing administrative offices, change rooms, and a spectator viewing mezzanine.
The Extension occupies the site of a former parking lot; pre-existing parking remains to the south, while a generous new lot with multiple access points has been added to the north. As a result, the entire complex now requires two main points of entry. Located at either end of the new connective lobby space, these entrances have been raised in elevation and depressed at the pedestrian level to strengthen their presence, and activated with new entry plazas.
These exterior plazas are joined to an outdoor lacrosse warm-up area, an extension to the hiking trail that links the Centre to Mill Creek Ravine, and a designation for the possible future addition of a play area. Along the ravine, native species were planted to expand the existing naturalized zone in a sustainable, low-maintenance landscape that would thrive under local conditions. Even the building massing—in addition to being tuned to enhance the interior spectator experience—has been devised with an eye to stormwater catchment and its effect on this vital watershed.