One of four wellness centers simultaneously constructed or expanded on the four Arizona State University campuses, the Sun Devil Fitness Complex at ASU West (all four complexes share the name) provides ASU West with a dramatic presence while remaining sensitive to its surrounding context.
In keeping with the university’s master plan, the project planning extended the existing campus planning grid.
This was established when the campus was founded in 1984. ASU West’s SDFC was sited and designed to create a new quad and green space as formed by the fitness complex on the south, newly-constructed housing to the west, and dining on the north. It joined the academic anchor to the east. This new “student space” is the social anchor of an ambitious plan on this campus—but also across ASU’s traditionally-commuter campuses—to transition to a more residential-oriented system.
The SDFC’s design was guided by one of the university’s prime directives during this ambitious multi-campus project: “Incorporate student ideas and technologies in the design process and provide opportunities for student participation throughout the life of the building.”
To that end, the building’s designers participated in weekly meetings with students (who funded the project through a recreation fee surcharge), “visioning” workshops, listening sessions, public meetings, and hands-on design events where students manipulated scale blocks representing different aspects of the program. All of this ensured the design was unique to the ASU West Campus.