The Physical Activity and Wellness Centre (PAW) is an award-winning fitness centre that encourages healthy lifestyle choices by offering a variety of activities related to the overall concept of wellness.
Project Name: University of Alberta PAW Centre
Architect Name: Group 2 Architecture+ Interior Design
Located on a prominent corner of the University of Alberta campus, the PAW acts as a showpiece for the university, emphasizing the importance of an integrated approach to physical activity. The building is an iconic landmark at the main entrance to the North Campus, the stunning inverted cone design uses exposed structure and glazing to showcase its ingenuity and unique interior.
New and old buildings are connected by an atrium-like space that functions as a ‘social street’ incorporating student services to activate and energize a pedestrian thoroughfare that will serve as a major access point to the campus. The social street has glazing on the north and south facades as well as clerestory windows which flood the space with natural light. As a result, direct ambient daylight reaches 80% of the primary space of the building.
Steel was heavily involved to form the structure of the complex climbing cone. A three-dimensional steel truss was used to provide support for the walls with steel beams supporting the roof. The steel truss provided space to accommodate mechanical systems for an innovative displacement ventilation system. Due to the stated steel innovations, the PAW Centre won an Award of Excellence at the Canadian Institute of Steel Construction Alberta Steel Designs of Excellence Competition.
The PAW Centre is a collaboration between the Student’s Union, Graduate Students’ Association, Faculty and the University of Alberta, and has been designed to promote and foster health and well-being of the campus community. Since it’s construction the facility has seen a 300% increase in activity over the previous centre.
Established in 1985 Group2 brings 35 years of design excellence to Western Canada. Group2 continually pushes the boundaries of design to empower employees, clients, the AEC industry and society. For three decades the core architectural, environmental and social values that inform their work have resulted in a reputation of high-quality projects and long-term relationships with clients. Group2 is respected for their responsiveness, ingenuity and collaborative processes. On every project Group2 endeavours to meet user requirements and client aspirations, while maintaining economically and environmentally attainable.