Seton Hill University | McKenna Recreation Center

CFBT Architects

Greensburg, PA

Seton Hill University’s beautiful hilltop campus features a 1929 castle-like building known as Sullivan Hall. Its round turrets and Tudor architecture has seen the passing of many students over years. The University recognized the need for a new recreation center, as the student body has recently become co-ed and the introduction of men’s teams and more competitive women’s teams is a part of the long range strategy for growth.

The new recreation center is adjacent to, and connected with, Sullivan Hall and Bayley Hall via a loggia that ties them together around a quadrangle. Sullivan Hall, under the immense slate roof, the swimming pool and gymnasium serve as an intramural gym, and the snack bar, meeting and conference rooms, bookstore and student facilities invite student participation.

The site is dramatic. To the west side the building looks into a formal courtyard; to the east, there is an expansive view over the city of Greensburg. The running track was fashioned to take advantage of the site, allowing individuals to look over the natural environment and, as they come around the track to the west, to look out onto the quadrangle. The design of the track also provides significant natural light which reduces operating costs of the building.

The project also includes a 700-seat gymnasium, lobbies and support spaces, as well as new men’s and women’s locker rooms, a health and fitness center and a dance/aerobics studio. The gymnasium-playing surface is level with the quadrangle. This takes advantage of the sloping site and allows bus and ADA access from vehicles while completing a true ring road, a recommendation set forth by CFB in the campus master plan.

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