Virginia Tech Previews Indoor Athletic Training Facility

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (VirginiaTech) previewed its newly completed Indoor Athletic Training Facility (IATF) on August 15. Media and guests took a first look at the $18 million, 92,000-square-foot building, the latest addition to Virginia Tech’s sports facilities.

“Former Virginia Tech Athletic Director Jim Weaver was the champion of the project and Hokie Football Coach Frank Beamer inspired the design,” said Fred Ortiz, lead designer on the project.

He explained at the Saturday event, “During a speech to the Richmond Hokie Club, Beamer made a connection to the university’s core values – inscribed on the pylons at Memorial Court above the War Memorial Chapel – as a device intended to motivate and inspire the football team. At team meals and before and after practice, the team would recite the following: brotherhood, leadership, loyalty, Ut Prosim (the university motto: “That I May Serve”), service, sacrifice, honor and duty.” Pylons with the values are primary supports for IATF’s large barrel-vaulted roof, and serve as a daily reminder to student athletes as to why they are here and their role in the community.

“This large training facility had to fit, not only its immediate context, but also with the collegiate gothic-style buildings on campus, “Ortiz added. Neighbors Cassell Coliseum and Merryman Center inspire the barrel-vaulted roof form, and column support details mimic Lane Stadium.

Functional requirements for the facility included over 200,000 square feet (210 feet x 400 feet) of flexible training space, appropriate run-off clearances and padded walls for safety, 85-foot high clearance to accommodate special teams practice, high bay sports lighting and platforms at 20-foot and 60-foot heights allow for coaches and videographers to work both inside and out. Six garage doors allow a larger training area and ease of access and a large translucent wall provides ambient light, minimizing the use of power to illuminate the space.

“To give you an idea of the scale of this facility, the White House can actually fit within this huge volume,” Ortiz said. “The entire design-build team, including partners at W. M. Jordan Company, are quite proud of this accomplishment.”