The Fox Valley Park District (FVPD) commissioned Cordogan, Clark & Associates as the architects for its new $20 million Valley Athletic Community Center in Aurora, Illinois. This 227,000 s.f. recreation complex is the largest facility of it type in Illinois. This new recreation center is designed to meet the current needs of the FVPD while remaining adaptable to the future needs of the community.
This multi-purpose field house contains an indoor soccer field; basketball, volleyball, tennis, and badminton courts. A suspended running track encircles the perimeter of the field house. The aquatic area contains an eight-lane 25-yard lap pool, a leisure pool, a therapy pool and recreational water systems. The complex also contains dance, cardiovascular, aerobic and weight-training areas, as well as a concession area, locker rooms, administrative offices, and a multipurpose room for community programs.
The complex adjoins the existing Aurora Tennis Club and includes a 10,000 s.f. fitness area along with a multi-purpose field house which features an indoor soccer field, basketball, volleyball, tennis and badminton courts, along with batting cages, a 1/8 mile in-door track, and a suspended running track encircling the perimeter of the field house.
Of all the options that await inside, there is one feature that appears to draw the most attention - the orange slide that swirls and curves outside the east end of the building, and eventually leads swimmers back inside to one of the two plunge pools. "We've had moms tell us that, if the kids are in the car, they can't even drive down Indian Trail," said Tom Roe, the former facility's manager. "The slide is a nice trademark for us."
Within the aquatic area, you will find an eight-lane, 25-yard lap pool, a 7,000 s.f. leisure pool, therapy pool and recreational water system. "We wanted to build something that everybody could benefit from - from the pre-schooler to the senior citizen," Roe said, "No one group could say you catered to one group or another."
"We wanted people to come in and feel comfortable," said Bruce Cairns, project architect for Cordogan Clark & Associates. "With all the glass, it gives visibility to all the facilities inside."
The Vaughan Athletic Center has been widely acclaimed and won numerous design awards. It received the American Institute of Architects' Northeast Illinois Honor Awards - 2007 Distinguished Building Award; Midwest Construction magazine's "Best of 2006" Award of Merit in the Sports and Entertainment category; the American Sports Builders Association (ASBA) - 2006 Outstanding Indoor Multipurpose Facility Award; the McGraw-Hill Midwest Construction - 2006 Merit Award Winner for Sports & Entertainment Facilities; and was published in both the Recreation Management - May 2007 Innovative Architecture & Design Awards, and Athletic Business - June 2006 Architectural Showcase; in addition to receiving the Illinois Park & Recreation (IPRA) - 2006 Outstanding Facility & Parks Award.