PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — The Brown community will celebrate the completion of the new aquatics and fitness center complex during a dedication ceremony on Friday, May 25, 2012. The ceremony will include remarks by President Ruth J. Simmons, Chancellor Thomas J. Tisch, Director of Athletics Michael Goldberger, and lead architect Robert A.M. Stern. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center.
The new 84,000-square foot aquatics and fitness center is a $46-million addition to the existing athletic facilities built on and near the site of the former Smith Swim Center on Hope Street. Designed by Robert A.M. Stern Architects and constructed by Shawmut Design and Construction, the project includes the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center, the Nelson Fitness Center, the David J. Zucconi ’55 Varsity Strength and Conditioning Center, Fredric B. Garonzik ’64 Fitness Area and the Ittleson Quadrangle.
“This exceptional complex would not have been possible without the support of donors who care deeply about this University and the facilities we offer our students," said President Ruth J. Simmons. "I especially applaud the vision that went into the design of this complex. It is not only strikingly beautiful and well-suited to the surrounding neighborhood, it is energy efficient, using solar technology to heat the million gallons of pool water.”
Members of the Brown Corporation broke ground on the project on May 28, 2010, and it was ready for use in April 2012. In total, 500 construction jobs were created over the course of the project.
Features of the new complex include:
- the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center, featuring a 56-meter swimming pool for varsity competition and recreational use, three-meter diving, and seating for 800 spectators. A system of movable bulkheads allows simultaneous activities by different groups and could increase recreational swimming time;
- the Nelson Fitness Center, which includes the 10,000-square-foot multipurpose Fredric B. Garonzik ’64 Fitness Area for students, faculty and staff;
- the David J. Zucconi ’55 Varsity Strength and Conditioning Center, a 12,000-square-foot facility for varsity athletes and teams;
- the Ittleson Quadrangle, a large landscaped green space, replacing the parking lot in front of Meehan Auditorium and the Olney-Margolies Athletic Center;
- three exercise studios;
- offices for coaches and administrative staff;
- varsity locker rooms for men’s and women’s swimming and diving and water polo teams;
- car parking and an arrival point for team buses behind the Olney-Margolies Athletic Center (to be constructed when the temporary pool is removed);
- social space, including a lobby with café.
The project was made possible by gifts from Jonathan M. Nelson, a Brown trustee, parent and 1977 graduate; H. Anthony Ittleson, a Brown parent and 1960 graduate; the late Fredric B. Garonzik, a former trustee and 1964 graduate; Daniel S. O’Connell, a Brown parent and 1976 graduate; and the estate of the late Raymond L. Moran, Class of 1941.
On target for LEED Silver certification, the complex includes a system of 168 rectangular panels on the roof of the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatic Center that generate enough power to keep the lights on and enough thermal energy to heat the million-gallon pool. The center is Rhode Island’s first hybrid (heat and power) solar installation, as well as the largest in the nation and the first on a college campus.
There is also a touch of East Side history. The original cupola from Marvel Gymnasium, carefully preserved when the gymnasium was demolished in the summer of 2002, was added atop the Nelson Fitness Center on Oct. 20, 2012.