Commonwealth Community Recreation Centre / MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects

© Tom Arban

Architects: MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects
Location: Edmonton, Alberta,
Associated Architect: HIP Architects (Local Architect)
Area: 220,000 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Tom Arban


© Tom Arban

The project is a joint-use partnership between the City of Edmonton and the Edmonton Eskimos Football Club; combining football operations, stadium programming, and a recreation centre. The facility adaptively reuses the 1978 stadium fitness centre and connects these usergroups over 4 stories through a cascading promenade and an innovative approach to materials and transparency. The project has revitalized a vacant stadium ground into a 24/7 urban park and community destination. The LEED-silver development includes a 60,000 sf 3-basin aquatic hall, 80,00 sf field house, 30,000 sf fitness centre, running track, gymnasium, and 30,000 sf of community space and new Eskimo Administration and Operations.


Three primary masses – Field House, Aquatics and Gymnasium – respond to the dynamic triangulated geometries of the site and frame a central lobby space – ‘the Social Heart’. These in turn define three exterior forecourt spaces.

© Tom Arban

The building responds to the scale of the stadium and its dynamic nature. The pool massing creates a prow-like gesture, suggesting speed and movement. A southern canopy shields direct light and unifies with the taller field house mass. The cost effective silver metallic cladding is deeply carved to reveal a tessellated phenolic wood panel system. This rationalizes envelope geometries and frames large openings. Walls of variegated ceramic frit glazing modulates heat buildup, solar glare and user privacy.

© Tom Arban

The project’s planning interconnects the fabric of an underdeveloped neighbourhood, creates a year round community park, and draws the public from all three sides to a new Social Core. Park promenades are developed N-S and E-W through the building to connect community, transit, and the community recreation centre.

© Tom Arban

The project is designed to allow three partnering but diverse groups to share their program specific amenities for mutual benefit and revenue. The Eskimos Football: use the pool, track, and fitness centre for player training and host game related events in the gym and meeting spaces. The Community: has joint use of the field house and use the Eskimos Football meeting and coaching rooms in the evening and off-seasons. The Stadium Operations: hosts side-stage events in the field house, uses the Community and Eskimo meeting and locker rooms for hosting and staging functions for concerts and athletic events.


* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: “Commonwealth Community Recreation Centre / MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects” 15 Jun 2013. ArchDaily. Accessed 07 Jul 2013. <>

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